-December 9, 2013-
3:00 -- Former San Diego Mayor Bob Filner sentenced, but media can't seem to determine his political affiliation. The Panthers' horrible showing in New Orleans, why leftists believe Obamacare will work, and why one progressive says Canada's death panels should be emulated.
4:00 --NC Secretary of Education June Atkinson says voucher money could go to "schools of terror" - when asked about a private Christian schools stance against gay marriage. Plus, NC Republicans say they'll try to get teachers a pay raise, Budget Director Art Pope responds to leftist picketings of his family's store. Meanwhile, Congressional leaders are in budget talks.
5:00 -- One in five Americans will be "rich" for some period in their lives. And would you rather have your dream job making $40,000 or the worst job - but making $150,000?
-December 10, 2013
3:00 -- President Obama shakes a communist's hand and poses for a "selfie" at the memorial for Nelson Mandela. Outrage ensues.
4:00 -- Mark Keller & Rick Phillips join us in studio to preview tomorrow night's Hometown Holiday Jam at the Orange Peel. Plus, Janet Casperson from Blue Ridge Bear Yogurt & Espresso tells about their "Joe for Joes" care package drive they're running. Stop by and donate to help send sweets & coffee to troops in Afghanistan.
5:00 -- More on the "Selfie seen around the world." Plus, NC DHHS software problems are completely different than the Obamacare website problems because ... well ... the GOP is in charge of the NC government while Democrats are in charge of the national failure.
-December 11, 2013
-December 12, 2013
-December 13, 2013
It seems Governor Pat McCrory is interested in a bit of fight with his Republican colleagues in the General Assembly. I think it's a smart political play.
This week, the Legislature overrode McCrory's only two vetoes.
Democrats and the media (but I repeat myself) pounced. State Senator Josh Stein, who has been suggested as a potential challenger to the Governor in 2016, took to Twitter:
#NCGA just overrode both of Gov. McCrory's vetoes in a stinging rebuke to him.— Josh Stein (@JoshStein_) September 4, 2013
How does he lose in this Sen. @joshstein_? He got 2 national issues and confirmation of his "stepping on toes of both parties" talking pt.— Pete Kaliner (@PeteKaliner) September 4, 2013
Wouldn't the "stinging rebuke" be the initial veto? Or is there enough stinging rebukes to go around for every Republican? That would be conveniently beneficial.
Former Governor Bev Perdue, a Democrat, used the veto 19 times on legislation that came from the Republican-controlled General Assembly. Of those 19 vetoes, the GOP was able to override 11.
Since then, Republicans picked up more seats in both the House and Senate, creating the current veto-proof majority.
When McCrory was sworn in, Democrats and pundits said he'd have no real authority or power because of this super-majority. So, forgive me if I don't believe their faux surprise expressed when their predictions occur.
But the gleeful reaction ignores the obvious: the Governor and General Assembly have agreed on virtually every piece of legislation.
According to the General Assembly website, 418 bills were passed during the current session. McCrory vetoed two.
That would mean he disagreed with the GOP Legislature 0.48% of the time. I doubt an agreement rate of 99.5% is evidence of a rocky relationship.
The composition of the General Assembly allows Gov. McCrory the luxury of picking which issues he wants to argue. We saw him do this very thing in Charlotte, albeit with a Democrat-majority City Council.
He told me years ago, even if his veto gets overridden, he still has managed to highlight an issue he thinks needed more attention. Sometimes he'd veto items in order to force media coverage on it.
Monica is one of my long-time listeners from Charlotte, and she nailed it in an e-mail to the show yesterday:
"McCrory had to veto it if he wants to seek higher office, which of course he always is. Again, like when he was Mayor, it's easy to veto stuff you know will be overridden."
The two issues he chose to highlight through the veto were drug testing recipients of certain public assistance, and a law that (among other things) expands the definition of "seasonal workers" from 90 days to nine months.
Democrats might not like the idea, but Gov. McCrory is in a position to attract national attention for higher office. If he wins re-election in 2016, he'll be in a position for a Presidential run in 2020.
And he just picked up three issues he can use in future campaigns - at any level:
1. "I think we should help people who have addictions - not starve them and make them lives harder."
2. "I worked to save American jobs."
3. "I stepped on the toes of both the Left and the Right." (This is a talking point he has used since he Mayor, and I suspect we'll keep hearing it.)
When it comes to the veto overrides, McCrory wins by losing.
But this isn't the end of the story. In responding to the veto overrides, Gov. McCrory announced:
House Bill 786 triples the E-Verify seasonal worker exemption from 90 days to nearly nine months and has created a loophole that could cost legal North Carolinians jobs. This measure changes the law’s focus from exempting ‘temporary seasonal employees’ to help the state’s farming industry to exempting a category of employees for any industry, regardless of the season or the needs. Thus, I will direct the executive branch to explore all legal and executive authority to ensure the letter and spirit of our nation’s immigration law is followed in this state
Based upon the lawmakers’ vote on drug testing, the executive branch will not take any action on the new law’s implementation until sufficient funds with this unfunded mandate are provided, not only for the Department of Health and Human Services, but also the funding for consistent application across all 100 counties.
We'll see how this actually plays out, but it's never a good idea to announce you're not going to follow the law.
Especially if you're a Republican politician.
Democrats can get media coverage casting them as a principled hero, but McCrory will just be savaged from both the Left and the Right.
Still, I suspect he'll try to parlay the E-Verify issue into an immigration-related initiative that will please his base and maybe some working-class Democrats. Also, I bet the welfare drug testing will quietly get funded.
But that's just my guess.