This week on “The Debrief”:

* After weeks of apparent inaction, it looks as if the North Carolina General Assembly is close to a final deal on a state budget.

* The NC FreeEnterprise Foundation calculates the rising costs of waging election campaigns in North Carolina.

*When news broke that Attorney General Josh Stein’s campaign lost $50,000 to a scam, two Republicans vying to face Stein in the 2024 governor’s race responded. One panelist’s analysis: “Shots fired!”

*A group called Freedom Conservatives recently unveiled a new statement of principles. An original signer explains why.

* The iconic Barbie doll is now the subject of a movie. The film has polarized some audiences and prompted a lot of debate among the chattering classes.

Be sure to visit each day for the latest on North Carolina politics and public policy.