Pat McCrory is coming to town.
The Forsyth County Republican Women have announced that our first-term governor will speak at their annual holiday event on Dec. 10. His appearance will surely pack them into the Forsyth Country Club and flood nearby sidewalks with protestors.
The McCrory Administration was supposed to be free of scandal, a unifying force, but it has been anything but. The exorbitant salaries being paid to political hires may be just the tip of the iceberg. A bigger issue for the governor is his seeming difficulty in simply telling the truth; he can’t just tell it like it is.
During a nationally-televised interview on MSNBC last week, McCrory demurred when political reporter Chuck Todd asked him about the decision he and his Republican cohorts made to curtail voting rights. He insisted that the bill to reduce the early voting period to 10 days from 17 days was not a shortening of the voting calendar, just merely a more “compacted” voting calendar. Really, Governor?
McCrory and the GOP had the temerity to efface early voting, so the governor should have the courage to admit as much. Not only has the early voting span been nearly slashed in half, same-day registration was kicked to the curb, as was early registration for teens who will turn 18 before Election Day.
With a straight face, McCrory told the nation that these changes weren’t political. He somehow reasons that the changes will make the voting process better for election workers and residents. (Shockingly, a bolt of lightning didn’t descend from the sky, nor did the governor’s nose grow longer after he made these claims.)
More than half of the North Carolinians who voted in 2012 did so early. The governor probably owes his victory to a great deal of folks who went to the polls before Election Day. But early voting statistics don’t favor Republicans. Women and minorities – groups not usually receptive to conservatives – tend to vote early more often. The GOP knows this and has made destroying early voting a key priority.
McCrory has been busy during his first year in the Governor’s Mansion. In between the massive remodeling project (using tens-of-thousands in taxpayer money), the governor is mastering the art of the spin. His circumfluence was on full display on MSNBC. He is determined to convince the victims of the bad laws he and his lot have passed that the voting changes, education budget-slashing, etc. were really done for their benefit.
McCrory vowed to be a straight-forward and straight-talking leader, but he is the very epitome of a politician.