Bev Perdue: I've done a great job

Time will tell.

With the polls heavily against her and a facing a combative relationship with a new Republican majority in the Legislature, Perdue told ABC11 Thursday she decided not to run again because one term was enough. "I didn't want to do it anymore. I've done a great job, I believe, and someday the books will say that," Perdue said.


Rock and a hard place

If "great job" means sticking a finger in a collapsing dam and temporarily holding back the GOP tsunami, then maybe Bev's right. But if "great job" means transforming an insular 20th century political machine into an effective 21st century governing machine, well, that didn't happen.

For the past couple of years, Governor Perdue suffered the same delusions under which President Obama is currently operating. In an attempt to represent the common good, she met the GOP more than half way on far too many issues, playing defense in a game that was rigged from the get-go. Instead of going straight to the people and pushing to raise taxes on millionaires, for example, she offered up a Republican-lite budget, demoralizing a Democratic base that was already on the ropes. North Carolina would be better off if she had told Thom Tillis to go fuck himself. And the North Carolina Democratic Party would be better off if she had vetoed every piece-of-crap legislation that came out of the General Assembly over the past two years. I even wrote the speech she should have given.

Governor Perdue now has a week to make up for lost time. Pardoning the Wilmington 10 should be at the top of her to-do list.

For those who don't follow links

My fellow citizens,

After months of behind-closed-doors deal-making, bribery, and political whoring, North Carolina Republicans have dumped a barrel of bills on my desk, bills thrown together at the last minute without the benefit of any public input or thoughtful consideration. I am going to give these bills the same careful attention they received in the General Assembly. That is to say, I am not even going to bother to read them before I veto them. Every. Single. One.

The people of this state expect me to be a steward of our traditional values and of our future. I cannot in good conscience go along with the Republican race to the bottom. I cannot in good conscience sign bills that would undermine the quality of our environment and our education system. I cannot in good conscience sign bills that make it harder for people to vote. I cannot in good conscience sign any of the bills that have come to my desk this week.

I was hoping that the Republicans in the General Assembly would have focused on the one thing that matters most to the people of North Carolina: jobs, jobs, jobs. If they had sent me a bill that put more people back to work or helped protect middle class families from economic disaster, I would have been happy to sign it. Instead, I got hundreds of special favors for special interests and millionaires, not one of which will do a damn thing to help this state be more competitive in the 21st century. Not a damn thing.

And so it is with a sad and angry heart that I tell Senator Berger and Representative Tillis that I will not be a party to their irresponsible actions. I will not be complicit in dismantling the progress we have made in this state over the past 100 years.

I will veto every bill they have sent me.

Read more:

Legacy = Pardon of Innocence

I have respectfully sent my thoughts on this matter to Governor Bev Perdue:

Years ago, I was smeared by a local gentleman online who aimed to derail my first campaign for Mayor of Pittsboro. After the initial shock of being personally libeled, I wrote him a letter forgiving him for his incendiary attack. In it I told him that vengeance was the sword of humanity and forgiveness the elixir of the gods. He was surprised that I forgave him in writing for being wronged by him online.

When I think of our nation’s past and specifically the great State of North Carolina, there are many moments when we have been asked to choose between being “vengeful” or “forgiving”.

I am not writing to sit in judgment of the past or comment on men and women acting in the context of their times, but I do see clearly that the opportunity to participate in the arc of history in a meaningful way through direct action is quite rare.

Former Illinois Governor George H. Ryan made such a move in 2003, when his broad grants of clemency addressed serious deficiencies in the criminal justice system of Illinois and were a clear move toward reform and justice.

Today, with evidence before us, we have a similar opportunity in North Carolina to participate directly in the grand narrative of history, forsaking incremental steps toward justice and instead take a giant leap of redress and in effect balance the State of North Carolina squarely with the scales of justice.

A full pardon of innocence for the “The Wilmington Ten” with a clear and unambiguous justification will be the ray of light that leads us through the dark night of history that many live daily.

Such a clear and coherent act of forgiveness from our State will send a signal to our neighboring states and the world at large that North Carolina is still a beacon of justice. People will be reminded that our state's legacy is rooted firmly with the beliefs and teachings of great Tar Heels like Frank Porter Graham, Terry Sanford and William Friday and be inspired once again by North Carolina.

Mayor R. Voller