Welcome to the Law & Order edition. The North Carolina political battle continues to enter the courtroom, with critics of the Republican legislature using lawsuits to challenge an agenda they can’t stop.
The newest lawsuit fights the private school voucher law. The “Moral Monday” trials continue. And attorneys are in federal court today pressing their case to block the state’s new election law.
On the other side, a Democratic lawmaker is arrested on felony tax charges and resigns. And the hearing for a Republican lawmaker convicted on federal charges is postponed.
***Get a full roundup on the charges and cases below in the Dome Morning Memo, along with more #NCSEN news.***
A joint legislative oversight committee on public safety will talk about the state’s SBI crime lab at its 1 p.m. meeting at the legislative office building.
“This race is not about the president,” Hagan said in an interview, twice refusing to say whether she approves of Obama’s job performance.
But Tillis, a 53-year-old former IBM executive who has the strong backing of the GOP establishment but is by no means the prohibitive front-runner, is betting that Southern Democrats who once thrived here are dying breeds because of the liberal policies coming out of Washington. He is defiant about North Carolina’s hard-right turn, calling it a “reform agenda unlike any other state in the United States.”
Hagan’s provision would reinstate North Carolina’s eligibility for the federal Emergency Unemployment Compensation program. The state became ineligible for the federal money over the summer when the General Assembly reduced the amount of state benefits and the length of time that unemployed people can receive them. Read more here.
The enrollment numbers are an improvement over October’s total of about 1,600. But they represent a mere fraction of the roughly 1 million North Carolinians who were expected to shop for individual insurance under the new federal mandate. Read more here.
McManus, 56, of Siler City resigned from her House seat several hours after posting a $150,000 bond so she could be released from the Wake County jail, where she had been booked on the charges.
She was charged with three counts of embezzlement of state money related to more than $47,000 in state individual income tax withheld between January 2011 and July of this year at her husband’s medical office, Carolina Family Practice in Siler City. “It is with deep sadness that I have decided to resign from the House of Representatives effective today in order to focus on a personal matter that has arisen,” McManus wrote in a letter delivered to House Speaker Thom Tillis’ office. Read more here.
The word “exclusively” is very unusual in a state constitution, Craige said. “We’re going to ask [the court] to declare that ‘exclusively’ means exclusively.”
Craige said the bottom line is that taxpayer funds are being redirected into private schools in violation of the constitution. “We have no problem with private schools,” Craige said. “We have no problem with home schools. Wonderful. We have a vibrant system of home schools in North Carolina. That’s terrific. But we don’t ask taxpayers to fund it.”
“Not only are these left-wing interest groups fighting every attempt to improve public education, they now want to trap underprivileged and disabled children in low-performing schools where they will continue to fall behind their peers,” the statement said. “Their shameful and defeatist mission will only hurt these students and our state.” Read more here.
The legislature had just rejected the federal government’s offer to expand Medicaid as part of the new federal health care law, and van der Horst said he was frustrated that he had not been able to present his concerns to any of the Republican leaders guiding that decision. ...
The groups, represented by the Southern Environmental Law Center, argue that state transportation officials had the right idea in 2003 when they leaned toward building a 17-mile bridge to carry N.C. 12 across Oregon Inlet and out into Pamlico Sound, bypassing the Pea Island National Wildlife Refuge. Read more here.