Daily dose: Corporate puppet serves his masters edition

mccrorypuppet.jpeg

McCrory: Budget surplus enough to trigger cuts to corporate taxes (Triangle Business Journal) -- The final numbers are in, and it appears the corporate tax rate is going down. Gov. Pat McCrory’s office reported Tuesday that final figures for the fiscal year that ended June 30 show the state has a $445 million revenue surplus. That’s enough to trigger automatic cuts to the corporate tax rate under the tax reform package adopted in 2013, McCrory says.
http://www.bizjournals.com/triangle/news/2015/07/28/north-carolina-budget-surplus-fiscal-year-2014-1...

VIVA trial update: "Expert" unfamiliar with VRA

Context is important:

In his cross-examination, Plaintiff's attorney Dale Ho pointed out that eight states — Alabama, Michigan, Mississippi, North Carolina, South Carolina, Tennessee, Texas and Virginia — do not have pre-registration of 16-and-17-year-olds, same-day registration or early voting and prohibit counting out-of-precinct ballots. Ho asked Trende if he considered these eight states to be in the mainstream of U.S. voting laws. Trende said yes.

Ho then asked Trende if he realized all eight states had been placed under some form of federal election supervision before the Supreme Court struck down Section 4 of the Voting Rights Act.
Trende said he didn't know that.

He should have known that. North Carolina isn't the only state that Republicans have targeted for voter suppression, we're part of a pattern. And that pattern was designed to be self-perpetuating: "Look at what these other states have done; we're just trying to conform." Chances are Trende actually did know, but chose to play possum. Hopefully the judge can see past this ploy, but he is a Dubya appointee, so...

Majority Back Bencher

This week Rep. Mark Meadows (R-NC) filed a motion to remove House Speaker John Boehner. This appears to be payback for Boehner's removing Meadows from a subcommittee chairmanship earlier this year. Meadows is also largely credited (or blamed) for the 2013 government shutdown. In the disastrous wake of that move, Meadows has vehemently denied any credit.

Daily dose: Burr already on hot seat edition

TV ads target Sen. Burr over EPA’s carbon emissions plan (Raleigh News & Observer) -- A pair of TV ads aimed at U.S. Sen. Richard Burr, R-NC, for his opposition to the federal Environmental Protection Agency’s forthcoming plan to reduce carbon emissions from power plants was launched on Monday by a national group. The League of Conservation Voters says it is spending about $100,000 on two TV ads airing on satellite across North Carolina.
http://www.newsobserver.com/news/politics-government/politics-columns-blogs/under-the-dome/article28...

VIVA trial update: Defense begins with dubious "expert"

Methinks "real clear" doesn't mean what he thinks it means:

Defense attorney Thomas Farr introduced Sean Trende as an expert witness Monday afternoon. Trende, who is Senior Elections Analyst for the website Real Clear Politics, described himself as an expert in 'Psephology.'

Trende said he was asked to place North Carolina voting law in a "national context." He said he would use his expertise in regression analysis to examine the effect of H.B. 589 on minority voters.

Here we go. This is shaping up to be like one of John Hood's painful, twisting forays into, "If you can't beat them, bore them to death."

When friends turn into Obama-hating zealots

Wallace McLendon of Chapel Hill penned an enlightening op-ed about his encounters with former friends who had been seduced by the dark side of money and bigotry, and I think it's as good a time as any to face some undeniable truths. Topping the list of those truths: Friendship requires at least a modicum of respect. Friends are somebody you can come to with your problems, and maybe together figure out the best way to solve them. Friends are also there to keep you in check, to stop you from buying snake oil and other wasteful ventures. But how can you respect somebody who judges an individual or an entire race based on the color of their skin? How can you respect somebody who worships at the altar of Faux News and Breitbart, or whatever source of "news" that reinforces their prejudices while wildly misinforming them? The answer is, you can't. You might be able to tolerate such a person in short bursts, as long as the door is in sight. But true respect is simply not in the equation. Nor is true friendship, so cutting that person loose is not something to feel shame or regret over.

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