NC House Scheduled To Vote On Veto Override Tomorrow
The North Carolina House plans to vote tomorrow to override Governor Bev Perdue's budget veto. The budget passed the Republican-led house with the support of five Democrats. Perdue only needs two of them to change their minds on the budget to prevent an override. The Senate already has the votes it needs to override the veto. WFAE's Lisa Miller talks with Mark Rumsey about the budget showdown. MR: Lisa, Governor Perdue was in the area yesterday. You were covering that. Is there any indication how she may be trying to work on these five Democrats? LM: Perdue does have close ties with at least one of those five Democrats who voted along with Republicans. That's Bill Owens. He's actually a fundraiser for Perdue's re-election campaign. So it's reasonable to assume she's had some talks with him. But here's what she said yesterday: PERDUE: I don't need just five Democrats, I need five good people. It can be Republicans, independents, tea-partiers, or whatever. We just need them to switch over and vote for us with this budget. LM: Now, Republicans are trying to keep the focus on Perdue, not the Democrats cause they don't want to do anything to upset the five Democrats who support their budget. Here's House Speaker Thom Tillis laying out strategy during a closed door caucus meeting about a week-and-a-half ago. No one realized at that meeting the mics were on. TILLIS: If anybody makes the mistake of using the word Democrat. It costs you $5 every time and it goes into the candy fund. This is not about Democrats because we have Democrats voting for this budget. Please do not go after the Democrats. MR: So Democratic budget or Governor Perdue's budget, whatever you wish to call it, what are the differences between it and the budget that actually passed? LM: Overall the Republican budget is about $200 million shy of what Perdue wants to spend next year and the difference is about $450 million the following year. The governor's budget spends about half a billion more on education, including higher ed, over the two years. It calls for only the partial elimination of what was billed as a temporary sales tax hike two years ago. The Republican budget lets that tax expire. Senate President Pro-Tem Phil Berger says the governor issued the veto to energize what he called her liberal base. Now, Perdue's campaign did send out an email to her supporters shortly after her veto of the budget that urges them to call their state lawmakers and tell them not to override her veto. The email also included link to contribute to her campaign. An aide to Perdue says the governor didn't approve the link and that it had been shut down.