Debbie Leonard
Democratic Candidate Visits Ocracoke

Richard Bew is running in NC's 3rd Congressional district Democratic primary.

Colonel Richard Bew (pronounced Boo), a resident of Newport, NC and a Democratic candidate for the Congressional seat left vacant by the recent death of Rep. Walter Jones, visited Ocracoke on Saturday, March 16. The visit was arranged by Mickey Baker and hosted by Chad and Robin Macek at Oscar’s House Bed and Breakfast.  Col. Bew is the only candidate out of the 26 who are running for the seat who has visited the Outer Banks and Ocracoke.

A small but interested and informed crowd was on hand to greet Col. Bew. The gathering was informal in nature with Col. Bew introducing himself and explaining his stance on key issues, followed by questions and comments from those in attendance. “I’m here to hear you,” he said. When explaining his desire to represent the 3rd NC Congressional district, he said, “my entire life has been about service.”

His life of service began with the example set by his parents; his father was a high school music teacher and lifeguard for 48 years; his mother, a concert pianist. Col. Bew’s own service includes 29 years in the Marines with nine deployments, eight of them military to Iraq, Afghanistan, Turkey, Italy, Japan, Kuwait, Bosnia, and Serbia. He is a pilot who primarily flew EA-6B Prowlers but also other combat aircraft. His final deployment was working with Congress as the Legislative Director to the the Joint Chiefs of Staff. Among the many medals he was awarded are the Defense Superior Service Medal, a Bronze Star, Defense Meritorious Service Medal, and two Individual Air Action Medals with Combat. His family service continues with his children; his daughter is an EMT and his son is a junior in the Coast Guard Academy.

Col. Bew believes that his military and foreign service experience along with his work with Congress gives him an unique perspective to fill Rep. Jones’ vacant seat. Col. Bew pledges the following: 

Democratic Candidate Visits Ocracoke

Access to affordable healthcare is a particularly important issue in Col. Bew’s family. When he was a newlywed his wife suffered a sudden life threatening illness. Because he was a Marine, they had immediate access to good healthcare that saved her life. In addition, Col. Bew noted, they did not go bankrupt trying to pay for her care. His grandson has cerebral palsy but because his daughter is married to a serviceman, they also benefit from access to quality healthcare. He believes that all Americans need affordable and stable healthcare instead of going from year to year with fear of not being able to obtain affordable insurance.

The crowd had several other questions and comments concerning the expanded powers of the military, wind turbines in the ocean, climate change as it affects agriculture, immigration, women’s health issues, and the rights of the LGBT population. 

Col. Bew stressed that he wants a strong military that we don’t need to use and emphasized that communication with others is the key to understanding. As a marine he pledged to support the constitution of the United States and as a representative of Congress he will uphold the individual rights guaranteed to us by the Constitution. He believes that “immigration is the fiber of our country” and noted that his grandparents were immigrants from Poland and his great grandparents immigrated from England. He acknowledges that we need comprehensive immigration reform and that he relies on data to inform his positions. He said that the data show that immigrants commit fewer violent crimes and are economically important to the United States.

Col. Bew said that as he reached the end of his service with the Marines, he realized that he could not walk away from public service. “Our place in the world is eroding and Washington DC is divided” he said. He believes that we need people committed to service and that he can make a difference.

The primary for the special election for the 3rd District of North Carolina will be on April 30, 2019 with the general vote held on July 9. If there is no clear winner for the primaries then the July vote will be a run-off and the election will be held on Sept. 10, 2019. To learn more about Richard Bew, look here:

For more information about the special election, look here:,_2019

or consult your local board of elections.