Sunday News: Immoral minority edition


Pro Life Groups Protest at Planned Parenthood Clinics (TWCN-TV) -- The controversial issue of abortion was at the center of a number of protests held at Planned Parenthood clinics throughout the Carolinas on Saturday. Those events all part of a nationwide effort by pro life groups to end all federal funding for Planned Parenthood.

Anti-abortion activists rally at Planned Parenthood in Raleigh (WRAL-TV) -- Anti-abortion activists are protesting outside Planned Parenthood clinics across the Carolinas.

Main Street Dem opposes municipal broadband

Rep. Michael Wray co-authors a propaganda-laced op-ed:

The Federal Communications Commission, in Washington, D.C., recently voted to overturn a North Carolina law that set limits on municipal broadband networks. We’ll leave the question about whether the FCC’s action was constitutional to the legal scholars.

But even if the FCC action is legal, that doesn’t make it right. That’s why we support U.S. Sen. Thom Tillis’ legislation to stop the FCC from overturning North Carolina’s law.

As you can see, not only is this op-ed riddled with industry talking points, this "Democrat" is actively promoting Thom Tillis' Senatorial activities. On top of that, he uses the hardships General Assembly Republicans have foisted on municipalities as a lever to discourage muni broadband:

Saturday News: One scandal too many edition

McCrory's mysterious role in NC sweepstakes scandal (Facing South) -- There has been speculation about the degree to which Republican Gov. Pat McCrory was involved in the sweepstakes industry's pay-to-play politics since he received thousands of dollars of laundered sweepstakes money in the form of campaign contributions, worked for a law firm that played a central role in the scandal, and made dubious statements to the media. Though McCrory has not been charged with any wrongdoing, his actions raise questions about his relationship to the sweepstakes industry and its push to legalize its business in North Carolina. Earlier this month, elections watchdog Democracy North Carolina sent a letter to U.S. Attorney Thomas G. Walker and Wake County District Attorney Lorrin Freeman asking for "an independent, comprehensive investigation" of potential criminal violations by the sweepstakes industry, lobbyists and candidates for state office including McCrory, The group filed the original 2013 complaint that triggered the election board's investigation.

Private water, public suffering

With a little help from NC's bent Supreme Court, Aqua America continues to screw its clients:

North Carolina's highest court has upheld a decision by regulators allowing the state's largest private water utility to raise customer rates through an abbreviated process the General Assembly recently created for water and sewer improvements.

The state Supreme Court ruling's Friday affirmed last year's decision by the Utilities Commission involving Aqua North Carolina and rejected appeals of Attorney General Roy Cooper to make the utility complete the full rate-case process.

Any elected official in NC that supports the privatization of drinking water should be required to answer directly to the people paying these bills. I'll let Lisa Sorg explain it, in an article written before the Indy screwed up royally and let her go:

Burr's cluelessness on national security

Lot's of complaints, but only vague solutions:

Burr said he wasn't suggesting that thousands of U.S. armed forces be sent to fight the terror groups, but rather that trust must be rebuilt among U.S. allies in the region surrounding places such as Syria and Iraq, where the Islamic State is strong.

"Let's prosecute the war against terrorism, and let's leverage not just the Kurds but everybody in the Middle East that has the potential for boots on the ground and change the landscape," he said.

Friday News: Puppet patronage edition


McCrory gets way on jobless benefit review board (Winston-Salem Journal) -- Gov. Pat McCrory has gotten his way in a long-simmering dispute over the composition of an independent board of review that hears appeals of unemployment insurance benefit decisions. The board is a part-time job paying $120,737 annually.

Bob Hall pushes for further investigation of sweepstakes corruption

But the system may be too subverted to take on the job:

“The report doesn’t connect the dots to all the money that changed hands,” Hall said Wednesday. “The DA and U.S. attorney have additional tools to investigate bribery, tax evasion, racketeering and public corruption. They need to use those tools for this case, as they have in the past.” Freeman said among her options is asking the State Bureau of Investigation to look into it further.

The SBI began looking into campaign donations from the video sweepstakes industry early last year, but by July, when the elections board report was made public, the agency said the case was closed. Freeman said she didn’t anticipate taking the matter to a grand jury without further investigation.

I find it interesting the SBI has the capacity to create blood-splatter evidence when it wants to railroad an innocent man straight to death row, but they can't follow a well-lit trail of illegal gambling proceeds without giving up and heading back home. Maybe because that trail was leading to their boss in the Governor's mansion:

Thursday News: Tea Party Trump?

Trump lead grows in N.C. (Public Policy Polling) -- Among North Carolina Republicans, Donald Trump is now at 24% to 14% for Ben Carson, 13% for Jeb Bush, 10% for Ted Cruz, 9% for Marco Rubio, and 6% each for Carly Fiorina, Mike Huckabee, and Scott Walker, according to the latest survey from Public Policy Polling. Those folks make for a pretty clean top 8 in the state. Rounding out the field are Rand Paul at 3%, Chris Christie and Rick Santorum at 2%, John Kasich and Rick Perry at 1%, Jim Gilmore, Bobby Jindal, and George Pataki with less than 1%, and Lindsey Graham with literally no supporters.


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