A closer look at NC DHHS' systemic voter suppression

This level of incompetence and non-compliance doesn't occur without some driving force:

North Carolina’s violations of Section 7 of the NVRA are demonstrated by multiple sources of information, including data reported by the NCSBE as well as the state Department of Health and Human Services, DHHS program forms, interviews conducted at North Carolina Department of Social Services (“DSS”) and Public Health (“WIC”) offices (collectively “DHHS offices”); and review of third-party contractor processes. Together, the sources of information reveal that DHHS is systematically failing to provide the voter registration services mandated by Section 7 the NVRA.

Daily dose: The GOP's anti-jobs legislation version


Pro-business or anti-environment? (Charlotte Observer) -- North Carolina’s solar industry took a double hit this week when the House passed a regulatory reform bill. Among other things, HB 760 would freeze the amount of energy that has to be produced from renewables such as solar at 6 percent. It’s now scheduled to rise to 12.5 percent by 2021. It also would reduce the incentive to build large solar farms by changing how clean-energy producers are paid by utilities such as Duke Energy. “We think the bill would have a negative impact on the clean energy economy in North Carolina, which will result in lost jobs and investment,” said Betsy McCorkle of the N.C. Sustainable Energy Association.

Coordinated Voter Suppression at the Welfare Office?

The Progressive Pulse is reporting today that a new analysis shows a significant drop in voter registration for applicants to food stamp and other welfare programs. Federal Law requires that welfare applicants also register to vote when they apply for assistance. Needless to say, a 50% decrease in these registrations for a population made up predominantly of those who tend to vote Democrat, is incredibly suspicious. It becomes even more suspicious when seen side by side with data from the "motor-voter" registration program.

Moms put Harris Teeter on notice about open carry in their stores

Fresh from my in-box:

ASHEVILLE, NC – Asheville-area members of Moms Demand Action for Gun Sense in America will visit the Harris Teeter store at 136 Merrimon Avenue in Asheville on May 9th at 10 a.m. to return their loyalty cards and deliver signatures of North Carolina residents asking Harris Teeter to change their firearm policy to prohibit the open carry of firearms along with a collection of receipts from stores with better gun policies. Harris Teeter currently allows the open carry of firearms in its stores, putting the safety and security of its customers and employees at risk.

Profiles in idiocy: Why do I have two garbage cans?

Dana Bumgardner wins this week's Cletus award:

"I live in a city that has recycling - what they call a recycling system," Bumgardner said. "We have to have two garbage cans. I really don’t have room for two garbage cans and don’t want two garbage cans. But when I set it on the side of the road, they don’t pick it up and take it with them. They just empty it and put it back."

And before you ask, yes, he really did say that. I've got one word for you, Dana: Bisphenol A. Okay, that's arguably two words. The thing is, when you microwave your Hungry Man meals, that BPA has a tendency to transfer from the plastic over to your genetically-modified fried chicken and laboratory-concocted mashed potatoes, disrupting hormones, and in your case apparently destroying what few active brain cells you have. If you don't recycle that plastic tray it will be put into the ground, where it will continue to leach away BPA, eventually making the microorganisms who try to convert it into useful nutrients just as stupid as you are. You don't want that to happen, do you? I didn't think so.

Daily dose: The irregular Governor edition


N.C. Board of Elections data reveal voter registration irregularities under McCrory (Daily Kos) -- A data-mining analysis of information publicly available from the North Carolina State Board of Elections has uncovered apparently systematic irregularities in voter registration efforts which are required of the state by the National Voter Registration Act of 1993 ('Motor Voter Act'). These irregularities, potentially disenfranchising tens of thousands of poverty-level North Carolina citizens, have all occurred during the Republican administration of Gov. Pat McCrory.

The Fine Young Federalists: Is SB 524 an attempt at indoctrination?

At least once a week, I find myself talking to someone who has absolutely no awareness of the American Legislative Exchange Council (ALEC) at all. Each occurrence of this phenomenon brings about the same feeling of utter disbelief in me. Slowly, I’ve realized that while I have a keen awareness of the influence ALEC has within the halls of NC Government, many, many people simply do not. In truth, although few of our Legislators publicly associate themselves with ALEC, if you name a regressive bill this NCGA has passed since 2010, there’s a high likelihood it came from ALEC.

Setting the record straight on NC's unemployment debt

Kudos to the N&O editorial staff for telling it like it is:

North Carolinians can be forgiven if they don’t applaud the payoff of the state’s unemployment insurance debt a year early, which the governor and the self-satisfied architects of the GOP agenda in the legislature celebrated Tuesday with big smiles on their faces and disgracefully over-the-top rhetoric by McCrory. Said he, “It took visionary leadership, it took courage and it took fortitude to make it happen.”

That’s insulting and ridiculous. Courage? Whose courage? The people who needed courage here were the ones victimized by Republican policies cutting their benefits for their families. Fortitude? The fortitude came from those whose hills got a little steeper thanks to the Republicans.


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