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Subject: McCrory and the Nuclear Option rss

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So Pat McCrory lost the gubernatorial race in North Carolina by around 8000 votes. So, Sue, you may be asking, what's there to talk about then? Well, plenty. Because he still has not conceded. Ripping a page straight out of Trump's campaign, he contends essentially that the election has been rigged.

Instead, he’s alleged voter fraud in about half the counties in NC. The GOP-led County Board of Election in Durham County, which is one of the larger counties, has already voted to deny a countywide recount. The campaign has responded by filing 5 new complaints in that county alone.

The McCrory campaign is also shamelessly engaged in outright lying about the supposed fraud, with the campaign manager putting out such statements as, “Why is Roy Cooper fighting to count the votes of dead people and felons?” McCrory’s state budget director also tweeted that Durham County has 231,000 residents over the age of 18 but 232,000 registered voters, implying fraud, when Durham’s voting-age population was about 235,600, and the county has only 193,659 active registered voters. And as mentioned above, Board of Election in Durham County has already rejected the prior complaint, despite being Republican controlled.

The consensus is that he cannot close such a wide gap simply by even a statewide recount. So what’s his end game? The nuclear option. North Carolina law has a little known provision that when “a contest arises out of the general election,” and that contest pertains “to the conduct or results of the election,” the legislature “shall determine which candidate received the highest number of votes” and “declare that candidate to be elected.” McCrory appears to be trying to set the stage for the legislature to proclaim him governor, by alleging fraud, mishandling of ballot, and irregular vote counting. And the best part is that it’s completely unreviewable by the courts.

One would hope that the North Carolina legislature isn’t stupid enough take this step. This reminds me of the idiots that were circulating the idea that the electoral college voters could somehow ignore the results of a fair election and declare Clinton the winner. They’d have to lose their minds to do something as undemocratic as that. Because like any nuclear option, you can bet on it being used against you in the future.

http://www.businessinsider.com/pat-mccrory-wont-concede-nort...

http://www.slate.com/blogs/outward/2016/11/21/pat_mccrory_is...
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HE puts the `orable into "deplorable". and he "IS"!
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Somehow the people who are demanding the Dems accept the narrow loss of the presidency seem reluctant to accept the Reps' narrow loss of the governorship of NC...

Probably because of dudes in the ladies' room. Or something.
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Is the "little known provision" automatically triggered, or does something else have to actually happen (like a failure to conduct any recounts in all counties challenged by the challenger)?
 
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It doesn't sound like it's automatically triggered.

Quote:
North Carolina state law states that when “a contest arises out of the general election,” and that contest pertains “to the conduct or results of the election,” the legislature “shall determine which candidate received the highest number of votes” and “declare that candidate to be elected.” By alleging fraud, mishandling of ballots, and irregular vote-counting, McCrory is laying the groundwork for the legislature to proclaim that a “contest” has arisen as to “the conduct or results of the election.” At that point, it can step in, assert that McCrory received “the highest number” of legitimate votes, and “declare [him] to be elected.”
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chrisnd wrote:
Is the "little known provision" automatically triggered, or does something else have to actually happen (like a failure to conduct any recounts in all counties challenged by the challenger)?


Link to the statute. http://www.ncga.state.nc.us/EnactedLegislation/Statutes/HTML...

He'd have to file notice with the legislature to contest the election first.

A committee would then be formed, which can have a majority (3 out of 5) of the same party:

A contest filed under this section shall initially be heard before a select committee consisting of five Senators appointed by the President Pro Tempore and five Representatives appointed by the Speaker of the House of Representatives. Not more than three members of the Senate appointed by the President Pro Tempore shall be members of the same political party. Not more than three members of the House of Representatives appointed by the Speaker shall be members of the same political party.

The committee would then report its "findings." - And that's where I think the clearer heads will prevail if he goes this route. You'd think it'd have to be based on real evidence of fraud and not just hand waving.

The wonky part is the next part, because it involves a vote and the reps don't really have to follow the committee recommendation.

Final Determination. - The final determination on the recommendations of the committee shall be made by the General Assembly, both houses sitting in joint session in the Hall of the House of Representatives, with the Speaker of the House of Representatives presiding. The vote shall be taken as provided by Article VI, Section 5 of the Constitution.

However, again, presumably there will not be insanity because their determination is supposed be based on the following:

If the contest is as to the conduct or results of the election, the General Assembly shall determine which candidate received the highest number of votes. If it can determine which candidate received the highest number of votes, it shall declare that candidate to be elected. If it cannot determine which candidate received the highest number of votes, it may order a new election, or may order such other relief as may be necessary and proper.

But what's really awful about it is that it's not reviewable by a court.

General Assembly Determination Not Reviewable. - The decision of the General Assembly in determining the contest of the election pursuant to this section may not be reviewed by the General Court of Justice.

It's awful because they have guidelines that they are supposedly to statutorily abide but it's all very vague. It makes sense that you don't want an election determined by a court, but on the other hand, you do want to assure that the statute's guidelines were followed.

I have a lot of confidence that North Carolina will make the right decision however. No matter how much one side wants to win, I think that generally we don't try and steal elections this blatantly.

Let good sense prevail.
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Wow... talk about gerrymandering... in NC, a state where the vote is split very near 50/50 between Republicans and Democrats, they have 10 Republicans in the House and only 3 Democrats. Seems like a pretty important governorship for the Democrats to control going into 2021. The Democrat would have to win reelection of course, but that is always easier as an incumbent.
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There could become FEDERAL 'intervention' as being SEEN with "disenfranchisement" of the majority voters. whistle
 
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wifwendell wrote:
Somehow the people who are demanding the Dems accept the narrow loss of the presidency seem reluctant to accept the Reps' narrow loss of the governorship of NC...

Probably because of dudes in the ladies' room. Or something.


Well...why are you trying to put dudes in the ladies room?

Freak.
 
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wifwendell wrote:
Somehow the people who are demanding the Dems accept the narrow loss of the presidency seem reluctant to accept the Reps' narrow loss of the governorship of NC...

Probably because of dudes in the ladies' room. Or something.
tstone wrote:


Well...why are you trying to put dudes in the ladies room?

Freak.
MATHS "Kegger"-"other door":
$2-#1-'stand'; $4-#2-'sit'!
PROFIT!
/surprise\
 
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she2 wrote:
So Pat McCrory lost the gubernatorial race in North Carolina by around 8000 votes. So, Sue, you may be asking, what's there to talk about then? Well, plenty. Because he still has not conceded. Ripping a page straight out of Trump's campaign, he contends essentially that the election has been rigged.

Instead, he’s alleged voter fraud in about half the counties in NC. The GOP-led County Board of Election in Durham County, which is one of the larger counties, has already voted to deny a countywide recount. The campaign has responded by filing 5 new complaints in that county alone.

The McCrory campaign is also shamelessly engaged in outright lying about the supposed fraud, with the campaign manager putting out such statements as, “Why is Roy Cooper fighting to count the votes of dead people and felons?” McCrory’s state budget director also tweeted that Durham County has 231,000 residents over the age of 18 but 232,000 registered voters, implying fraud, when Durham’s voting-age population was about 235,600, and the county has only 193,659 active registered voters. And as mentioned above, Board of Election in Durham County has already rejected the prior complaint, despite being Republican controlled.

The consensus is that he cannot close such a wide gap simply by even a statewide recount. So what’s his end game? The nuclear option. North Carolina law has a little known provision that when “a contest arises out of the general election,” and that contest pertains “to the conduct or results of the election,” the legislature “shall determine which candidate received the highest number of votes” and “declare that candidate to be elected.” McCrory appears to be trying to set the stage for the legislature to proclaim him governor, by alleging fraud, mishandling of ballot, and irregular vote counting. And the best part is that it’s completely unreviewable by the courts.

One would hope that the North Carolina legislature isn’t stupid enough take this step. This reminds me of the idiots that were circulating the idea that the electoral college voters could somehow ignore the results of a fair election and declare Clinton the winner. They’d have to lose their minds to do something as undemocratic as that. Because like any nuclear option, you can bet on it being used against you in the future.

http://www.businessinsider.com/pat-mccrory-wont-concede-nort...

http://www.slate.com/blogs/outward/2016/11/21/pat_mccrory_is...

Are you really that surprised that Dominionist North Carolina governor Pat McCrory would act like this?

Let's review: Right before the election, Tony Perkins of the Family Research Council offered the following prayer for Gov. McCrory:

Tony Perkins wrote:


May God give Governor Pat McCrory, Lieutenant Governor Dan Forest, and the members of the entire North Carolina Legislature extraordinary wisdom, moral strength, courage, and steadfastness to stand and withstand what is nothing less than an onslaught of evil. May God protect his people and America from blind leaders who are destroying our nation from within! May our next President have the understanding, the grace, and the will to undo the evil transformation that has taken place in America during the past eight years. And may God snap millions of blinded men and women out of the delusion that moves them to elect and re-elect men and women who advocate these things!


> North Carolina Governor's Race Results as of November 22, 2016 with 100% of precincts reporting:

Cooper 2,281,901 (49%)

McCrory 2,276,921 (48.9%)

Cecil 101,028 (2.2%)

McCrory’s loss has been attributed to his support of House Bill #2 (HB2), that notoriously nasty law that repealed local (city) LGBT nondiscrimination ordinances and forbade most transgender people from using certain bathrooms. As North Carolina's attorney general, Cooper had refused to defend HB2 in court and made it the centerpiece of his gubernatorial campaign. This strategy proved quite effective because HB2 is wildly unpopular in North Carolina, and many voters blame McCrory for encouraging its passage and vigorously defending it in the face of widespread boycotts.

The North Carolina governor’s race was widely pitched as a referendum on HB2, and on the politics of anti-LGBT legislation more broadly. McCrory’s loss suggests that, at least in purple or light-red states, LGBT-bashing bills remain politically toxic. But his defeat rang a bit hollow on the day after Election Day, given that Indiana Dominionist Republican Mike Pence is now Vice President.

But that's not how the foremost Dominion pseudo-historian sees it:


> Excerpts from the November 10, 2016 Right Wing Watch news story by Kyle Mantyla entitled:

Dominionist Pseudo Historian David Barton of Wallbuilders Declares: "North Carolina Gov. McCrory Lost Because He Got Squishy On His State’s Anti-LGBT Bathroom Bill"


David Barton

On today’s episode of “WallBuilders Live,” Religious Right activist & Dominionist pseudo-historian David Barton provided a recap of Tuesday’s election results and declared that North Carolina Gov. Pat McCrory lost his bid for re-election because he got “squishy” on defending HB2, the state’s anti-LGBT bathroom law.

David Barton of Wallbuilders wrote:


I’m being told that he could have won, had he not got so squishy on the bathroom bill. He kind of backed away from it after he signed it and that made people kind of say, "Uhhh... no." The problem with this is that his lieutenant governor never backed away and so Dan Forest is part of that package and that’s not good to lose Dan. So I’m told that out of North Carolina, he was being punished for being equivocal instead of being strong. Only 5% of voters in the election had any kind of LGBT affiliation. So that’s still a very small group, a very small thing. They tend to exercise more power than they have because of the power of intimidation and fear and whatnot and people are afraid of crossing them, pastors are afraid to say anything about the issue because it might offend somebody and businesses are afraid to say anything. But they’re still a very small group in the turnout.


In reality, it was McCrory’s vigorous support for the wildly unpopular law that most likely contributed to his defeat. Also, in North Carolina, the governor and lieutenant governor run independently, and Forest won re-election.

Nonetheless, it's apparent that a significant number of Domionionists believe McCrory to be a backslider and became disillusioned with him when he appeared to be trying to walk back, if not reverse, House Bill #2.



Suggested Other Reading Via Clickable News-Story Links

It Looks Like Pat McCrory, North Carolina’s Anti-LGBT Republican Governor, Is Out Of A Job

The Religious Right "Liberty" Icons Behind North Carolina's Appalling Anti-LGBT Law

Gov. Pat McCrory Is Wrong When He says North Carolina's New LGBT Law Doesn't Take Away Existing Rights

Gov. McCrory Prays As religious Group Leader Bashes Gays And Claims That The USA Deserves God's Judgment

Anti-Gay Activists To Rally In Defense Of North Carolina's New Anti-LGBT Law

Seven Mountains Dominionism At North Carolina's "Response" Rally For Gov. Pat McCrory

Culture War Politics At David Lane's "Non-Political" Prayer Rally For Gov. Pat McCrory

North Carolina’s Terrible Anti-LGBT Law Is Even Worse than We Thought

Ted Cruz Welcomes Endorsement From Pastor Ron Baity Who Linked Ebola To Gay Rights


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Tony Perkins were "PSYCHO"-'creepy' yet STILL! zombie ~"he's KILLING me here!"
 
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she2 wrote:
They’d have to lose their minds to do something as undemocratic as that. Because like any nuclear option, you can bet on it being used against you in the future.



I'm in no way in favor of overturning the EC vote, but I'd note 2 things;

1) Overturning the EC would definitely be more democratic, but only at the cost of being way less rule of law, which is why it's a bad idea.

2) Having a "Majority of actual votes count" nuclear option turned back on me is something I'd be comfortable with.
 
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windsagio wrote:
she2 wrote:
They’d have to lose their minds to do something as undemocratic as that. Because like any nuclear option, you can bet on it being used against you in the future.



I'm in no way in favor of overturning the EC vote, but I'd note 2 things;

1) Overturning the EC would definitely be more democratic, but only at the cost of being way less rule of law, which is why it's a bad idea.

2) Having a "Majority of actual votes count" nuclear option turned back on me is something I'd be comfortable with.


Really on the second part? You would not if this situation were reversed. I don't believe you are being truthful with yourself. And moreover it would serve to erode our faith in our system much more than the current result. It is the action of a petulant candidate to act so.
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she2 wrote:
windsagio wrote:
she2 wrote:
They’d have to lose their minds to do something as undemocratic as that. Because like any nuclear option, you can bet on it being used against you in the future.



I'm in no way in favor of overturning the EC vote, but I'd note 2 things;

1) Overturning the EC would definitely be more democratic, but only at the cost of being way less rule of law, which is why it's a bad idea.

2) Having a "Majority of actual votes count" nuclear option turned back on me is something I'd be comfortable with.


Really on the second part? You would not if this situation were reversed. I don't believe you are being truthful with yourself. And moreover it would serve to erode our faith in our system much more than the current result. It is the action of a petulant candidate to act so.


Well just to be clear. I would prefer a straight majority vote, even if it meant I lost. That said, I am against any recount shenanigans. I agree that trying that would be destructive.
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McCrory concedes

"Despite continued questions that should be answered regarding the voting process, I personally believe that the majority of our citizens have spoken and we should now do everything we can to support the 75th governor of North Carolina, Roy Cooper," McCrory
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"Moral Support" with lacking "Legislative" sort as well. whistle
 
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North Carolina General Assembly Adjourns After Repeal Of House Bill 2 (HB2) Fails


> Excerpts from the December 21, 2016 Associated Press news story by Gary D. Robertson & Jonathan Drew entitled:

North Carolina General Assembly Adjourns After Repeal Of House Bill 2 (HB2) Fails


Opponents of House Bill 2, which requires transgender people to use the public bathroom associated with the sex listed on their birth certificate, protest at the North Carolina Capitol in Raleigh.

The North Carolina General Assembly adjourned Wednesday night after the repeal of House Bill 2 failed.

After hours of delay Wednesday, wavering Republican legislators stumbled with pushing through the repeal of a North Carolina law dictating which bathrooms transgender people must use in government buildings and schools.

The addition of a six-month "cooling off period" (i.e. moratorium) on cities passing non-discrimination ordinances for LGBT people — like the one in Charlotte that led to House Bill 2 — caused Democrats to back away from the bill, calling it only a partial repeal. HB2 has been blasted by gay-rights groups and resulted in job losses and sporting event cancellations.

At the same time, House Republicans remained divided over supporting any repeal legislation, putting the ultimate result of the special session called by Gov. Pat McCrory in doubt.

Democrats said the measure broke an agreement with Charlotte leaders who repealed its ordinance telling city restaurants and hotels to let transgender people use the bathroom aligned with their gender identity.



Jeff Jackson

"This wasn't the deal," said State Senator Jeff Jackson, a Charlotte Democrat. "This bill breaks this deal. Charlotte would have not repealed its ordinance is this was the deal."

Senate Republicans began debating the repeal measure that blocked local governments from passing ordinances regulating employment practices or public accommodations related to restrooms, showers, or changing facilities for 180 days. But the Republican Party halted the debate after about 30 minutes and went into a private caucus to talk.



Phil Berger

Republican State Senate leader Phil Berger of Eden, the repeal bill's primary sponsor, said the delay would give lawmakers time in 2017 to find a long-range solution to address issues that led to Charlotte's ordinance and HB2.

"It gives everyone an opportunity to start over," Berger said. "You don't get those chances very often ... an opportunity for us as a state to get this right."

But in another sign of mistrust between Democrats and Republicans since the GOP took control of state government four years ago, Republicans fired back that it was Charlotte city leaders who passed a partial repeal of its ordinance Monday. Council leaders disagreed with that assessment, but still met Wednesday morning — an hour before the special session began — to repeal other portions of the February ordinance that hadn't been invalidated by HB2.



Bob Hagemann

This was nothing "other than an honest or sincere effort," city attorney Bob Hagemann told the council Wednesday. "The state is sovereign and we are not. ... We're not smart enough to try and trick them."

House Republicans couldn't seem to figure out what they wanted. They spent most of the day in closed-door meetings fighting about whether to approve a repeal bill. Several conservative lawmakers opposed any repeal and said the law needed to be preserved.



Jeff Collins

"There is no extraordinary circumstance," said Republican State Rep. Jeff Collins of Nash, during a brief debate over session procedures, "other than the extraordinary hubris of a city council telling us we have to act by a certain date." Monday's action by the Charlotte council was contingent on HB2's repeal by Dec. 31.

They and other social-conservative groups said HB2 provides privacy and protection for children using restrooms and locker rooms. The U.S. Justice Department and others contend the threat of sexual predators posing as transgender persons to enter a bathroom is practically nonexistent.

Crowds at the Legislative Building remained inside the House and Senate galleries and in the third-floor rotunda all day, keeping watch on what action lawmakers would take. The mood was much more docile than the angry demonstrations of last week, when Republican legislators pushed through in a surprise session measures that stripped incoming Democratic Governor-elect Roy Cooper of a range of powers enjoyed by McCrory.

Cooper made HB2 a key issue in his campaign against McCrory, saying he wanted it repealed and blamed McCrory for hurting the state's brand as a business destination. Cooper won by about 10,000 votes. McCrory conceded just two weeks ago after the vote count went into overtime.

Jennifer Bremer, 66, of Chapel Hill witnessed last week's tumult and wanted to see whether lawmakers really repealed the law. She says there haven't been any surprises so far.

"I think it's intended as cover to enable members who would otherwise oppose repeal to be able to say they got some positive outcome, something to say they stood up for something," Bremer said.

LGBT groups, which had fought any deal with legislators earlier this year to do away with the Charlotte ordinance, are frustrated by legislators adding the moratorium to the repeal.



Mara Keisling

"Today seems to be just about them still trying to not admit how badly they screwed up," said Mara Keisling, executive director of the National Center for Transgender Equality. "They should admit they messed up and repeal the bill."

The law has been widely opposed by numerous businesses, organizations and individuals. Gov. Pat McCrory's defense of the bill was a contributing factor in his narrow loss to Democrat Roy Cooper, who will take office in January and announced Monday that he had a deal with legislators to get rid of the law.

The passage of House Bill 2 in March thrust North Carolina into a national debate on transgender rights and harmed the state economically. The state missed out on new jobs as companies declined to expand in the state, while cancellations of concerts and conventions exacted a toll. The NBA moved its All-Star game to New Orleans, and in a huge symbolic blow to the college basketball-crazy state, the NCAA and Atlantic Coast Conference relocated events.

Repeal of the law could also end legal challenges by the federal Justice Department and transgender residents.

Passage of the state law was a reaction to the city of Charlotte passing a broad nondiscrimination ordinance the state GOP opposed. On Monday, the city voted to undo its ordinance - provided the legislature repeal HB2 by the end of the year.

One part of the original law has already been done away with. HB2 initially prohibited employees of private businesses from filing lawsuits in state courts alleging workplace discrimination but the legislature amended the law to reinstate that right.


Here are the three main sections of the law:

Public Accommodations

The law blocked a range of protections from taking effect in the state's largest city. Charlotte's ordinance would have covered gays and lesbians as well as bisexual and transgender people when they try to check into hotels, eat in restaurants or hail cabs; it also added marital status, sexual orientation, gender identity and gender expression to the city's list of protected characteristics in public accommodations and commercial businesses.

The state law instead created a new statewide public accommodations policy that prohibits discrimination based on race, religion, color, national origin or biological sex. But the law includes no specific LGBT protections, essentially preventing local governments from in the future approving ordinances similar to what Charlotte approved.

Weeks after the law's passage, McCrory did issue an executive order that expanded protections based on sexual orientation and gender orientation to state workers who work for the state's executive branch.

The law also forbids cities and counties throughout North Carolina from imposing any additional requirements on employers. A handful of local governments had made veterans a protected class, and this is no longer allowed.


Bathroom Use

Essentially, government agencies of all kinds must direct men and boys to multi-stall restrooms and locker rooms designated for use by people born as male, and keep women and girls in those designated for the female biological sex.

This applies to public schools, state university and community college systems, state agencies and local government offices.

Single-occupancy bathrooms or changing facilities are still allowed "upon a request due to special circumstances" to a local school board or by a person to a public agency. The decision on accommodating the request appears to rest with the school board or the agency.

There are exceptions, such as when preschoolers enter a restroom with their mother or father, or when a person with a disability needs assistance. Transgender people who have obtained a new birth certificate after a sex-change operation can enter the multi-occupancy bathroom that matches their new gender.

But just how individuals should apply and enforce the new rules is unaddressed in the law.


Workplace Rules

The law also reaffirmed that local governments can't require area businesses to pay a minimum wage higher than North Carolina's statewide minimum, currently set at $7.25 an hour. Cities and counties also can't enforce ordinances setting their own minimum standards for businesses for paid sick leave or other employee benefits, and can't require government contractors to meet public accommodations standards above those set in state law.

Cities and counties can continue to set higher wage and benefit minimums for their own workers, or for company workers when required as part of an economic recruitment and incentives agreement.


> Excerpts from the December 21, 2016 Right Wing Watch news story by Kyle Mantyla entitled:

Tim Wildmon of the American Family Association Says: "The Move To Repeal HB2 Is Anti-God And It’s Anti-Morality"


Tim Wildmon

On the “Today’s Issues” radio program this morning, American Family Association president Tim Wildmon interviewed Religious Right activist David Benhman about his contention that the move by the North Carolina legislature to repeal its anti-LGBT law, HB2, is nothing more than a “political shakedown” designed to persecute Christians.

Wildmon agreed and voiced his outrage that elected leaders in places like Charlotte would ever pass nondiscrimination ordinances in the first place, saying that they did so solely because they “wanted to force” women and girls to share restroom and locker room facilities with men.

“For people who don’t want men going into women’s restrooms and changing areas, that is not bigoted, that is not homophobic, that is not hateful!” a riled up Wildmon fumed as he declared that the repeal effort is “anti-God and it’s anti-morality. The bigger picture is it’s a continuation of the politics of sexual deviancy. They’re wanting to, little by little, do away with the Christian moral values system as it relates to human sexuality.”





> Excerpts from the December 20, 2016 Right Wing Watch news story by Kyle Mantyla entitled:

The Benham Brothers Warn: "The HB2 Repeal Is A Political Shakedown Aimed At Persecuting Christians"





North Carolina-based Religious Right activists David and Jason Benham were heavily involved in mobilizing support for the state’s anti-LGBT law, HB2, earlier this year, so they are predictably outraged by reports that the unpopular law is set to be repealed.

In a video uploaded to their Facebook page today, the brothers warned that the move to repeal the law is nothing more than a “political shakedown” designed to allow LGBT activists to pass laws that will persecute Christians.

David said that the anti-discrimination ordinance originally passed by the Charlotte city council that set off the push to enact HB2 had “declared open season on Christians” and that similar new laws would sweep the state if HB2 is repealed.

David Benham wrote:


Here’s what they’re really after. If you can repeal that, then they can go right back in and enact ordinances all over this state that will open up our bathrooms and our locker rooms to sexual predators; it will be open season on Christians that want to live out their faith in the marketplace and we will be targeted in the marketplace. That is exactly what is happening here. House Bill 2 is the only hurdle the Human Rights Campaign and sexual activists need to remove so that they can go out and force participation in this sexual revolution.






> Excerpts from the December 22, 2016 Right Wing Watch news story by Kyle Mantyla entitled:

Bryan Fischer of the American Family Association Declares: "Single-Stall Bathrooms Give Special Rights To Transgender People"





American Family Radio’s Bryan Fischer spent a good portion of his radio program yesterday railing against legislators in North Carolina who were working to repeal HB2, the state’s anti-LGBT law, in an effort that ultimately failed. During his broadcast, Fischer took a call from a listener who said that instead of allowing transgender individuals to use facilities that match the gender with which they identify, businesses simply need to add single-stall unisex bathrooms.

Fischer agreed, but then bizarrely complained that the existence of single-stall bathrooms amounts to giving “special rights” to transgender people

“They’re not getting the same treatment,” Fischer said, “they’re getting special treatment. They’re a tiny little slice of the population, they’re going to have a bathroom facility that’s reserved exclusively for them. Sexually normal people don’t have that; that’s a special deal. That’s not equal rights, that’s special rights. You get your own private bathroom with privacy that nobody else gets.”

Once again, Fischer seems to have a very confused understanding of what constitutes “special rights,” since obviously anyone is allowed to use a single-stall unisex bathroom, not just transgender people. That is the entire point.



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Lessons of the North Carolina HB2 Horror Show: Republicans Simply Can’t Be Trusted


> Excerpts from the December 22, 2016 Salon.com opinion column by Amanda Marcotte entitled:

Lessons of the North Carolina HB2 Horror Show: Republicans Simply Can’t Be Trusted
Democrats thought they had a deal to repeal North Carolina's hateful "bathroom bill." They played themselves for fools.


Congressional Democrats better pay attention to what’s going on in North Carolina right now, with the tussle around the discriminatory “bathroom bill” known as HB2. It’s an object lesson in why it’s so critical to resist the temptation to make deals with Republicans, and instead to resist their agenda at every turn. Republicans cannot be trusted. They are snakes in the grass and will renege on their half of the deal. Pretending otherwise, especially with a con artist in the White House — a guy who literally has a history of bamboozling people for money — is just foolishness.

To recap the bizarre happenings in North Carolina: Back in February, under pressure to align city law with federal guidelines, the city of Charlotte passed an ordinance including LGBT people in its non-discrimination law. The Republican-led state legislature and Gov. Pat McCrory retaliated by passing a state law that not only nullifies Charlotte’s anti-discrimination ordinance, but also makes it illegal for trans people to use the bathroom corresponding to their gender. (Although Republicans have framed this issue around “protecting” girls and women, in practice, it has the ironic effect of forcing men to use the women’s room.)

North Carolina faced a whole array of nationwide protests and boycotts in response to this overt bigotry, and the notoriety of HB2, was clearly a factor in McCrory losing the governor’s race to Democrat Roy Cooper, in a state carried by Donald Trump.

Perhaps it was this political fallout that led Democrats to believe Republicans meant it when they suggested they had regrets over HB2 and were open to repealing it. Charlotte officials made what looks in retrospect like a dumb decision, agreeing to repeal the city’s anti-discrimination ordinance if the legislature would in turn repeal its discriminatory bathroom law.

The deal was framed as a back-to-the-drawing-board thing, all about healing and consensus and starting over. In reality, it turned into Republicans playing the Charlotte Democrats for fools. What a surprise! Charlotte kept its end of the bargain by rolling back the city ordinance, but the North Carolina legislature haggled over HB2 all day on Wednesday before adjourning without even voting on any proposed repeal. Merry Christmas.

Republicans have rolled out an elaborate excuse for why they can’t hold up their end of the bargain, involving some pointless quibbling over timing. It hardly matters what the excuse is, especially since so many Republicans in the state legislature seem determined to hang onto HB2, no matter what. If the excuse wasn’t timing, it would be something else. Even if there are some moderate pro-business Republicans in North Carolina who were willing to cut a deal, the party’s far-right, anti-LGBT extremists were only too happy to kill any such bargain.

The larger lesson here is that Republicans cannot be trusted, at least not as that party currently exists. That should already be obvious, since they elected as president a man who has a long history of not just reneging on deals but bragging about it, repeatedly hiring people to do jobs and then refusing to pay them. Republicans turned out in droves to support a man who ran a fake university set up to cheat people out of large sums of money on false pretenses. The party, en masse, has already made it clear that it has no problem with cheating and grifting and dishonorable conduct, so long as conservatives get their way.

But for those who need more convincing, this horror show in North Carolina is a reminder that good-faith deals are impossible when dealing with the Republican Party.

This matters, because the incoming Senate minority leader, Chuck Schumer, has been running around telling the press that he’s interested in considering Trump’s proposed $1 trillion infrastructure deal. He really shouldn’t be, as there’s no chance that Trump’s plan is anything but a poisonous scheme to transfer wealth from working people to the already wealthy.

It’s important to read past the headlines. Schumer has also said that Senate Democrats “will certainly not sacrifice our principles just to get something done,” and has specifically flagged extensive tax breaks to investors as a non-starter. It’s possible that his current position is largely public posturing, meant to provide some moral authority when he decides Trump’s proposal is too dirty to support.

That said, if Schumer is seriously considering making deals with Donald Trump, he needs to reconsider immediately. As this North Carolina debacle makes clear, in the current political environment ordinary Republicans will screw Democrats over at the drop of a hat. If anything, the President-elect is even less trustworthy than his party.

Leave the snakes on the ground.





> Excerpts from the December 22, 2016 ACLU press release by James Esseks, Director of the LGBT & HIV Project, entitled:

North Carolina May Have Stuck With Discrimination, But Make No Mistake: Hate Doesn’t Sell

At 10:20 a.m. yesterday morning, Thursday, December 21, the North Carolina Legislature convened a special session designed to repeal the state’s hateful anti-LGBT law it passed in a hurry last March. But by day’s end, the dysfunctional body couldn’t agree on the repeal and closed the session. The discriminatory law is still on the books and still causing harm to North Carolinians every single day.

Despite the paralysis in Raleigh, there is a clear political lesson here for the rest of the country: The public doesn’t like anti-LGBT laws. Yet, other state legislatures are likely to consider bills similar to North Carolina’s HB2. So as state legislatures gather to start their sessions in early 2017, they should take note: Hate doesn’t sell.

There is no way to describe HB2 as anything but a sweeping attack on the LGBT community. The law stripped away existing LGBT non-discrimination protections in North Carolina cities and counties that had them, and it prevented any additional jurisdictions from enacting them. In other words, the North Carolina Legislature went out of its way to authorize discrimination in employment, housing, and by businesses based on sexual orientation and gender identity.

But the law goes further than simply preventing cities and counties from protecting LGBT people. It also mandates discrimination against transgender people. The law requires transgender people to use restrooms and other single-sex spaces that matched the gender listed on their birth certificate rather than their actual gender that they live every day. This forces transgender men into women's restrooms and transgender women into men's rooms in all state buildings, from schools to government office buildings to highway rest stops.

This rule is about more than restrooms, though, as it effectively excludes many trans people from full participation in public life. If you work for the state government, how do you go to work with no access to a restroom? If you’re a student at a public school, how do you go to class? If you’re just a regular citizen, what do you do when you’re at the Department of Motor Vehicles, or in court, or filing a complaint with the police?

Joaquín Carcaño, lead plaintiff in the ACLU and Lambda Legal lawsuit over HB2, is one of those government workers directly affected by the law. Joaquín works for a health care institute at the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill. He’s a man, but because Joaquín is also transgender, HB2 requires him to stay out of the men’s room. In a daily reminder of how threatening the state found his very existence, Joaquín had to go down several floors to the basement to use the one single-user restroom in his office building. And for many other students and workers across the state with no single-user restrooms available, the law means avoiding restroom use for entire days.

The public reaction to the law was swift and relentless. PayPal canceled an expansion that would have brought 400 jobs to the state. Deutsche Bank froze plans for 250 new jobs as well. Conventions canceled left and right. Performers from Bruce Springsteen to Pearl Jam to Cirque du Soleil to Maroon 5 to Itzhak Perlman canceled shows. And then the sports leagues weighed in: The NBA pulled the 2016-2017 All-Star Game from Charlotte. The NCAA moved all seven of its 2016-2017 championships out of North Carolina. And the Atlantic Coast Conference moved all of its 2016-2017 championships out of the state as well.

That’s backlash at a cultural level.

The economic cost of all of that is hard to quantify, but estimates reach many hundreds of millions of dollars. And beyond the financial harm, the state’s very brand and identity were seriously tarnished. It developed a reputation as a place more focused on excluding people than on creating a positive business climate or humane conditions for North Carolinians. Worst of all is the cost to the LGBT North Carolinians who felt displaced in their home state and rejected by the leaders elected to govern and protect them.

In late August, a federal court ruled that HB2 likely violates federal law and barred the University of North Carolina from enforcing HB2 against the individual plaintiffs who sued over the law.

Despite the public backlash and the court rulings, Gov. McCrory stood by the discriminatory law. In November, in significant part because of HB2, North Carolina voted him out of office in an election that otherwise went overwhelmingly for Republican candidates.

We believe that the courts will strike down HB2 in time, but no one should have to wait for justice, especially when the cost of that wait is putting your life on hold because you cannot freely or safely travel or work or go to school. With the repeal effort having failed, Joaquín Carcaño’s case will continue to trial, and we will secure relief for transgender people all across the state.

But while we wait for the courts to do their job, governors and legislative leadership in every state should take note of the response to HB2 in North Carolina. Unless you want your state to experience the kind of national outrage and derision that the American public has aimed at the Tar Heel State, don’t advance those anti-LGBT bills.



 
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