Editorial Responses to January 5th


Thom Tillis picks a fight with newspapers — So it turns out the Speaker doesn’t like how “midnight madness” at the General Assembly was portrayed in newspapers this week. “Tomorrow will be the last day I receive the Charlotte Observer at home after nearly 14 years. I decided if the Charlotte Observer is going to reduce itself to being a liberal blog, I’ll just read it online like I do ProgressNC, BlueNC, and the like. They are all kind of like road kill–you try not to look at, you do anyway, then you regret it,” House Speaker Thom Tillis in his Facebook message.


Thom Tillis: “Cancel my subscription!” — How a leading member of the House thinks he can effectively represent the concerns of his constituents when he doesn’t read the paper serving those constituents is beyond me. No Google alert will cover everything the Observer writes about. But I’m sure that Rep. Tillis has that covered. After all, he learned somewhere that drug testing for people on public assistance was a good idea.


GOP lawmakers break transparency pledge — N.C. House Republicans may or may not have violated the state constitution in convening a middle-of-the-night session to override a veto by Gov. Bev. Perdue. But they certainly violated the pledge they made last year when they took control of the N.C. General Assembly to bring more transparency to the legislative branch.


Late-night vote wrong — Fighting on behalf of public schools apparently has a political cost, as the Republican-led General Assembly demonstrated with its despicable early-morning action to punish members of the N.C. Association of Educators. By orchestrating a veto override in the dark of night, House Speaker Thom Tillis successfully retaliated against the teachers organization as he pledged in June he would do.


Seeing through a surprise vote in NC House — Nothing good happens after midnight. Not for teenagers. And not for surprise sessions of the North Carolina General Assembly. Leaders who spring crucial votes when some members are conveniently absent make a mockery of democracy. Many are justifiably angry following the state House’s actions last week.


Payback: GOP plays the stealth game well — When (GOP) House leaders failed to find the votes to override Gov. Bev Perdue’s veto of their repeal of the Racial Justice Act, they would not be denied the blood they wanted to draw.


The familiar call of the arrogant — Because we can. Do you recognize that? It’s the call of the arrogant, the powerful – or at least those who believe themselves to be. It’s the explanation we get from people who don’t think they need to explain themselves, and last week we heard it in words and in deeds from those who’ve forgotten whom they serve. In Raleigh, House Republicans held an after-midnight veto override vote early Thursday without giving the public notice – unless, possibly, you happened to be on the General Assembly website at 12:15 a.m. It was a vote Republicans could have held on any morning or afternoon and achieved the same result, yet they inexplicably decided to invite criticism by doing it with the stars shining down. … We’ve come to expect the contempt our elected officials show us, and we too often fulfill their expectation that we’ll shake our docile heads and do little else. But history is also filled with voters who rise together in protest, and with politicians who learn they had less of a mandate than they thought – as Thom Tillis might understand if he someday runs for statewide office.


Midnight in the legislature — Last week, the Republican legislature convened a post-midnight special session for the sole purpose of gut-punching one of their foes – the N.C. Association of Educators.


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