North Carolina General Assembly

The Party Line
11:07 am
Thu April 4, 2013

Religion Resolution Aptly Introduced On April 1st

Michael Bitzer

As you may have heard by now, a joint resolution has been introduced into the North Carolina General Assembly that proclaims religious liberty, especially as it relates to a court case coming out of Rowan County. 

The resolution goes through a number of points, which all deserve some explanation; first, the resolution begins:

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The Party Line
3:50 pm
Tue March 12, 2013

GOP Lawmakers Should Consider Voter ID Compromise

Michael Bitzer

With the GOP-led NC General Assembly beginning a “deliberative” consideration of requiring photo identification when voting, the heated rhetoric on both sides has only inflamed the passions of both supporters and opponents to Voter ID laws.

Anecdotal examples of people claiming to have voted multiple times are charged by one side, while the other side decrying the proposed legislation with charges of “we will fight them in the streets.”

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Local News
10:58 am
Wed February 20, 2013

Charlotte Has Few Legal Options If State Creates Regional Airport Authority

Charlotte Douglas Airport
Ken Lund flickr

North Carolina lawmakers are considering a bill that would strip control of the Charlotte airport from the city and create a regional authority to run it instead. The measure concerns Mayor Anthony Foxx. But it’s gained the support of others, including the chairman of the airport’s Advisory Committee.

It got us wondering – does the city have any legal recourse if it loses its airport? To answer that question, we turned to UNC-Chapel Hill public law and government professor Frayda Bluestein. She spoke with “Morning Edition” host Duncan McFadyen.

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State Politics
5:00 pm
Thu February 14, 2013

Stop The 'Power Grab,' Activists Urge McCrory

Beth Henry of NC WARN spoke about the conflicts of interest Senate Bill 10 might cause in front of the Mecklenburg County Court House.
Credit Tasnim Shamma

Several environmental activists were in front of the Mecklenburg County Government Center Thursday to speak out on Senate Bill 10. The legislation would fire all current members of many regulatory boards – including the Utilities Commission – and give the governor and lawmakers the power to appoint new members. Gerrick Brenner of Progress North Carolina calls the bill a power grab.   

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Local News
9:42 am
Tue February 12, 2013

What's So Special About A Special Superior Court Judge?

The Government Reorganization and Efficiency Act - which has passed the North Carolina senate and will now be considered by the House – has gotten a lot of attention because it would allow Republican leaders to remake a number of powerful commissions and regulatory bodies.  But the Act would also eliminate 12 Special Superior Court Judge positions – which got us wondering what a special superior court judge is.  So, we asked WFAE's Julie Rose to find out.

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The Party Line
4:01 pm
Wed February 6, 2013

Republican Lawmakers Demonstrate An Old Adage

Michael Bitzer

Back in 1831, U.S. Senator William Macy coined the phrase “to the victor go the spoils. In a war or other contest, the winner gets the booty.” In our modern times, “other contests” can be thought of as election contests just as easily. 

With the recent legislation by Republicans in the NC State Senate to strip clean a significant number of state commissions and boards, the saying about “elections having consequences” is as important as the spoils going to the victor. 

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Local And State Elections
6:30 pm
Thu January 17, 2013

Sen. Hartsell Cooperating With State Campaign Finance Investigation

State Senator Fletcher Hartsell (R-Cabarrus)

Last weekend, a report in the Raleigh News and Observer caught our attention.  State Senator Fletcher Hartsell of Concord had apparently spent nearly $100,000 of his campaign money to pay personal credit card bills over the last two years.

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Local News
3:47 pm
Wed January 16, 2013

Eugenics Compensation Facing Early Legislative Hurdles

NC Eugenics Victim Elaine Riddick reacts to a legislative hearing on compensation for victims in 2012.
Julie Rose

An effort to compensate living victims of North Carolina's now-defunct eugenics program is facing early opposition as lawmakers prepare to meet. Senate President Pro-Tem Phil Berger Wednesday said he doesn't support the plan as it was proposed last year and hasn't brought it up with his Republican colleagues. 

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The Party Line
3:23 pm
Tue January 15, 2013

Now, It's Time To Govern (and look ahead)

Now that the official inaugural festivities have concluded, the real work of governing begins for North Carolina’s Republican state government. 

Governor McCrory, Speaker Tillis, and Senate President Pro Tempore Berger are three leaders who seek to bring a distinct change to the state.

Beyond what commentators have observed, North Carolina Republicans could begin a more important transformation of the party for their national aspirations.

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Local News
12:58 pm
Fri January 11, 2013

Republicans Start The Year In Control Of NC House, Senate, And Governor's Mansion

Republicans now hold the North Carolina Governor’s Mansion and have majorities in both the state House and Senate for the first time in more than a hundred years. This week, Pat McCrory was sworn in as governor and the General Assembly convened its 2013 session. So now, the question is, “what will the GOP do now that it has control in Raleigh?”

Professor Michael Bitzer talks to Morning Edition host Duncan McFadyen.

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