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Ellmers wants historic Raleigh building named for Helms

Posted November 28, 2012
Updated November 29, 2012

— Second District Congresswoman Renee Ellmers wants to name a historic federal building in downtown Raleigh after the late U.S. Sen. Jesse Helms.

Ellmers said Wednesday she has introduced a measure in the U.S. House to rename the Century Post Office on Fayetteville Street the "Jesse Helms Federal Building and United States Courthouse."

Helms was a five-term Republican senator from Raleigh and conservative icon who died in 2008 at age 86.

The National Park Service says the building was the first federal government project in the South after the Civil War. The Federal Building, as it's called in the National Registry of Historic Places, was completed in 1878.

It houses Raleigh's office for the U.S. Bankruptcy Court, as well as a post office that was slated for closure last year before an intense local lobbying effort convinced the U.S. Postal Service to keep it open.

The building was renamed the "Century Post Office" in 1978 to celebrate its 100-year milestone.

Ellmers' office quoted Helms' widow, Dot, as saying her husband's Raleigh office was in the Century Post Office building for most of his Senate career.

Another federal building in Raleigh, which opened in 1970 is named after the late Democratic U.S. Sen. Terry Sanford.

108 Comments

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  • bubbaOK Dec 3, 9:25 a.m.

    He broke the controversy commandment repeatedly and bashed gays because they had no defenders. He dropped out of WF like Bill Friday. Here in his home county he brought home a JH Nursing Home. He left behind an nepotistic dynasty. BUT somebody voted for him time after time. Because of his ability to get the job done, do it, so history won't repeat itself.

  • Cock a doodle doo Nov 30, 8:20 a.m.

    OK, everyone who thinks Helms was a bigot: let's name it the Jackson/Sharpton/Barber building. Same result. -storcheim

    You seem to be the only one making that ridiculous suggestion.

    Jesse Helms is dead and gone, let him stay dead and gone except for his family and friends who can go to the grave site to remember him.

  • GravyPig Nov 29, 7:08 p.m.

    ""Freedom & Equality for ALL Americans!" workinghuman33

    And of course you think the Reverend William Barber is a great man, and not a racist? Barber is the biggest race baiter of this century. Much worse than Jesse Helms ever dreamed of."

    So now you are telling us what we think? I didn't realize we were talking about Barber, Sharpton, or Jackson. I didn't realize they were wanting to name buildings after them.

    Try changing the subject again, it will not change the facts.

  • Grand Union Nov 29, 7:05 p.m.

    "It sounds like some of you Helms haters think the majority of North Carolinians were / are racist homophobes. Oh, wait, the voters of North Carolina voted to not allow gay marriage too. But when was that? A long time ago? May of 2012? When our illustrious governor said we were like Mississippi? beachboater""

    LOL only 22% of the electorate voted to ban gay marriage....thats not a majority in any book....it was just a nasty little minority that chose a primary election to get their nasty little law passed.

  • Grand Union Nov 29, 6:59 p.m.

    "And of course you think the Reverend William Barber is a great man, and not a racist? Barber is the biggest race baiter of this century. Much worse than Jesse Helms ever dreamed of."

    who suggested naming a building after Barber? nobody, so why are you raising his name?

  • Grand Union Nov 29, 6:57 p.m.

    another clueless Republican......no way in heck should that old racists name be immortalised in a Federal Building. Its one thing keeping the remains of the old south like the Confederate memorial but quite another adding new ones.

  • GravyPig Nov 29, 6:56 p.m.

    "OK, everyone who thinks Helms was a bigot: let's name it the Jackson/Sharpton/Barber building. Same result."

    There is no "thinks he was a bigot". Let me re-cap what you missed while you were napping.

    ''The Negro cannot count forever on the kind of restraint that has thus far left him free to clog the streets, disrupt traffic and commerce and interfere with other men's rights.'' -- television interview, 1963

    "All Latins are volatile people. Hence, I was not surprised at the volatile reaction."

    I've been portrayed as a caveman by some. That's not true. I'm a conservative progressive, and that means I think all men are equal, be they slants, b**ners, or ni**ers. -- Jesse Helms, North Carolina Progressive, February 6, 19

    Does that sound like someone who is not a bigot? If this kind of speech is normal for you Storch, then I suggest you venture out into the world and see how things have changed while you were out.

  • GravyPig Nov 29, 6:47 p.m.

    "I don't support putting anyone's name on a building, road, etc. built using our tax dollars.

    But I will say that Senator Helms was one of the finest examples of what a public servant should be that has ever held public office. He was NOT a racist and never tried to play one group of people against another as our current President has done.

    He was MORE frugal with our tax dollars than his own money, something that is almost non existant in our current politicions.

    He would NEVER compromise his moral compass or flip-flop just to get votes or favors. And whether you shared his values or not he did see you as the devil as so many do today.

    A highly principled, honorable man whose memory should be held in high regard. But then again, the world is now full of hypocriticle, unsavory people who would lie and turn a blind eye to decency just to make themselves feel better."

    Thanks for the good laugh. Not racist....LOL!!! Honorable man..BWAHAHA!! Keep the jokes coming.

  • GravyPig Nov 29, 6:44 p.m.

    "He was a good Senator and did a good job of representing his constituents. He took on liberal Democrats and wasteful spending by the federal government. Being a conservative does not make one a bad person. We need more elected folks who do what is right as opposed to doing what is popular."

    You are right, being a conservative does not make someone a bad person. I would probably be right next to you defending his honor had it not been for the hate that he so openly spread.

  • GravyPig Nov 29, 6:39 p.m.

    "It sounds like some of you Helms haters think the majority of North Carolinians were / are racist homophobes. Oh, wait, the voters of North Carolina voted to not allow gay marriage too. But when was that? A long time ago? May of 2012? When our illustrious governor said we were like Mississippi?"

    The sad thing is, this pleases you. You are proud of that. Gay marriage wasn't legal here in the first place, you just had to have a law in the state constitution that said the same thing.

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