GOP HEALTH BILL FACES REVOLT FROM CONSERVATIVE FORCES (New York Times) – After seven years of waiting longingly to annul President Barack Obama’s signature health care law, Republican leaders on Tuesday faced a sudden revolt from the right that threatened their proposal to remake the American health care system. The much-anticipated House plan to repeal the Affordable Care Act also drew skepticism from some of the party’s more moderate members, whose constituents have benefited from expanded coverage in recent years. … Rep. Mark Meadows, Republican of North Carolina, said Vice President Mike Pence had portrayed the bill as a work in progress that would no doubt be amended, perhaps significantly. “The bill that was introduced last night is still open for negotiation and certainly for modification,” Mr. Meadows said. “And we took that as very encouraging news.”
POWER STRUGGLE BETWEEN COOPER, LAWMAKERS IN HANDS OF JUDGES (WRAL-TV) -- Lawyers for Gov. Roy Cooper argued Tuesday that state lawmakers illegally undercut his authority before he even took office in January, while lawyers for legislative leaders maintained that the General Assembly has the power to give certain powers to the governor or take them away. A continuing power struggle between the two branches of government has enveloped the third, with a panel of three Superior Court judges tasked with deciding the constitutionality of two laws the Republican-controlled legislature passed shortly after Cooper, a Democrat, unseated Republican Gov. Pat McCrory. There was no word on when the panel might rule on the case.
MCCRORY: 'I'M NOT DONE YET' (Charlotte Observer) -- In accepting the Charlotte Rotary’s top leadership award Tuesday, former N.C. Gov. Pat McCrory twice jokingly brought up last month’s Oscars flub, when presenters initially announced the wrong winner for best picture. It was a self-deprecating reference to big-name past Rotary winners such as retired Bank of America CEO Hugh McColl Jr. and former Charlotte Mayor John Belk. And an allusion to his close loss in November’s gubernatorial election to Democrat Roy Cooper.
COOPER AND DUKE U. REPORT EXPOSE NEED FOR VOUCHER TRANSPARENCY (Capitol Broadcasting Co. editorial) -- Gov. Roy Cooper's proposal to end private school vouchers should, at a minimum, spark a determined effort to bring accountability and transparency to the hastily conceived and poorly executed program. A new Duke U. report details just how badly managed the voucher program is. “The schools need not be accredited, adhere to state curricular or graduation standards, employ licensed teachers, or administer state End-of-Grade tests,” according to the report. If that were said of one of North Carolina’s public or charter schools, our legislators would be up in arms – demanding transparency and accountability.