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Updated: 2 hours 40 min ago

President Trump’s proposal to “improve” border security and enforcement attacks the immigrant community

Thu, 01/26/2017 - 11:30

President Donald Trump took immediate and counterproductive steps on Day 6 of his administration to appease the hateful, anti-immigrant faction among his supporters by announcing immediate and rapid changes to U.S. border security and immigration enforcement. Expanding the use of local law enforcement as a tool for mass deportations of immigrants runs counter to our ...

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Following outcry, legislators move to address statewide headache over school classroom sizes

Thu, 01/26/2017 - 11:00

Months after Policy Watch reported a new K-3 class size funding formula could have devastating impacts on local school districts, North Carolina lawmakers have filed legislation to offer the flexibility demanded by public school advocates. House Bill 13, co-sponsored by three state House Republicans, would grant local districts some limited flexibility when it comes to required ...

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Embarrassing flip-flop alert: Pope-Civitas hypocrisy hits new level with attack on redistricting reform

Thu, 01/26/2017 - 10:33

Most who follow North Carolina politics are already well aware of the absurd hypocrisy of Republican politicians like Senator Phil “That was then, this is now” Berger on the issue of political gerrymandering. Berger, of course, championed the cause of nonpartisan redistricting while Republicans were in the minority and, then — presto!! — developed a ...

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Speak bigly, carry a small pen: Trump’s executive order on the Affordable Care Act

Thu, 01/26/2017 - 07:32

On his first day in office, President Trump signed an executive order targeting the Affordable Care Act (ACA). Since then, much as been made about what the executive order might mean. Because Congress has failed to come up with a repeal-and-replace plan as expeditiously as promised during campaign season, it seems that the executive order ...

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NC GOP legislative leaders, federal plaintiffs ask court to halt Medicaid lawsuit so Trump’s administration can ‘evaluate issues’

Wed, 01/25/2017 - 19:35

House Speaker Tim Moore, Senate President Pro Tem Phil Berger and the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services have asked a federal court to postpone Medicaid expansion litigation so that President Donald Trump’s administration can evaluate the issues in the case. The U.S. Department of Health and Human Services has also agreed not to take any action ...

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Day 6: Trump expedites Atlantic Coast Pipeline among 50 priority projects

Wed, 01/25/2017 - 17:08

The Atlantic Coast Pipeline, often referred to as the Dakota Access Pipeline of the east because of its routing through Native American lands in North Carolina, is on the fast-track to approval. Today President Trump signed an executive order to expedite environmental reviews and approvals for high priority infrastructure projects, including the Atlantic Coast Pipeline, to be ...

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Democratic lawmakers talk agenda for new NCGA session

Wed, 01/25/2017 - 16:32

Democratic members of the N.C. House and Senate gathered Wednesday afternoon for a press conference on the new session of the General Assembly, their priorities and working with new Democratic Gov. Roy Cooper. Senate Minority Leader Dan Blue (D-Wake) and House Minority Leader Dan Jackson (D-Wake) led the wide-ranging discussion, which focused on unmet funding ...

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Change of administrations comes amid longest run of growth in modern U.S. history, but also fundamental economic challenges

Wed, 01/25/2017 - 16:31

Depictions of the North Carolina economy range from overly rosy to falsely apocalyptic, but the reality falls squarely in the middle, according to labor market data released today. The final state-level economic readings for 2016 show a decidedly mixed economic picture. “These have not been the best of times, but they haven’t been the worst ...

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The Medicaid blockade impacts hard working, average North Carolinians

Wed, 01/25/2017 - 15:30

Even though there is court hearing scheduled for Friday to lift the temporary restraining order on Gov. Cooper’s plan to close the coverage gap, leaders at the North Carolina General Assembly want to extend their efforts to block 500,000 North Carolinians from getting health coverage. Yesterday, Senate leader Phil Berger and House Speaker Tim Moore filed ...

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North Carolina House reconvenes with action possible next week

Wed, 01/25/2017 - 15:00

There have been 18 bills filed so far today by North Carolina lawmakers in the House, but as expected, there was no action in chambers as they reconvened for the first time since the long session started Jan. 11. House Speaker Tim Moore said there wouldn’t be any votes this week but that he expected ...

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Berger: HB2 compromise still possible

Wed, 01/25/2017 - 14:24

There wasn’t much action in the N.C. Senate Wednesday – the body came to order briefly, eulogized their recently deceased former colleague Ruth Samuelson and gaveled out until Thursday. Afterward, on the Senate floor, Senate President Pro Tempore Phil Berger (R-Rockingham) took some questions from reporters. Berger said he expects to have a process in place ...

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With legislature reconvening, Gov. Cooper pushes strong public school budget for North Carolina

Wed, 01/25/2017 - 11:46

Hours before members of the N.C. General Assembly were scheduled to reconvene Wednesday, Gov. Roy Cooper called on state leadership to unite behind a strong, pro-public education budget that raises pay for educators, funds schools equitably and restores a lauded teaching scholarship program discarded by lawmakers six years ago. “Your budget reflects your priorities, no ...

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Gov. Cooper to legislature: ‘Let’s get to work’

Wed, 01/25/2017 - 10:54

Gov. Roy Cooper is ready to put differences aside and work collaboratively with the North Carolina legislature. The Democratic governor and Republican-led legislature started out this year with a power clash that the courts now have to settle, but Cooper, in an online post titled “Let’s get to work,” said he’s certain they can work together moving ...

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Editorials pan proposed law to “protect” officials from protesters

Wed, 01/25/2017 - 08:42

Not surprisingly, State Senator Dan Bishop’s absurd proposal to criminalize the act of yelling at politicians is running into widespread derision. Editorials in the Charlotte Observer and Wilson Times/Greenville Daily Reflector explain why. Here’s the Times editorial as it was republished in the Reflector: “Before the General Assembly’s return to Raleigh today, the first harebrained bill of the ...

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The HB2 mess worsens: California bans official state travel to NC, other pro-discrimination states

Tue, 01/24/2017 - 14:12

North Carolina’s self-imposed ostracism from the modern world continues to worsen. A new law enacted by the state of California and effective January 1, prohibits employees of the state from traveling here on official business. This is from the website of the California attorney general: PROHIBITION ON STATE-FUNDED AND STATE-SPONSORED TRAVEL TO STATES WITH DISCRIMINATORY ...

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Day 5 of the Trump administration: Freezing EPA grants and contracts could jeopardize environmental projects in NC

Tue, 01/24/2017 - 11:00

  This is a developing story. NCPW will publish updates as they become available. The Trump administration has frozen the EPA’s grants and contracts, which could halt or stall dozens of key environmental projects in North Carolina. These initiatives touch every facet of the environment and have economic consequences as well. Federal money helps redevelop brownfield sites so they can be ...

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North Carolina senator tells women marchers ‘if brains were lard, you couldn’t grease a small skillet’

Tue, 01/24/2017 - 10:24

Two North Carolina GOP members took to social media Monday to express how they really felt about women taking to the streets Saturday to march for human rights. In a tweet that has since been deleted, state Sen. Joyce Krawiec, a Republican from Kernersville and former vice chair of the state GOP, wrote “Message to crazies @ ...

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Five things to have on your radar – none of which are #alternativefacts

Tue, 01/24/2017 - 10:08

#1 The fate of Obamacare &  the new HHS Secretary – Tom Price, President Trump’s nominee for Health and Human Service Secretary, faces more questions today from the Senate Finance Committee as he looks to be confirmed. Many are hoping to hear from Price on his interpretation of Trump’s executive order to rollback Obamacare. If ...

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New state Insurance Commissioner embarrasses himself in just first month on job

Tue, 01/24/2017 - 07:20

There was another disturbing confirmation yesterday that the era of Donald Trump and his ilk continues to drive political discourse — even discourse involving elected officials in less controversial positions — into the gutter. The latest depressing example: new North Carolina Insurance Commissioner Mike Causey. Causey has been a perpetual candidate for various state offices ...

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North Carolina politicos remember former state Rep. Ruth Samuelson

Mon, 01/23/2017 - 20:11

Two days ahead of the 2017 legislative session, Republicans and Democrats in the General Assembly are coming together to honor former state Rep. Ruth Samuelson, who died of ovarian cancer Monday. Samuelson, a Republican, served as a Mecklenburg County Commissioner from 2000-2004 before serving four terms in the NC House. The Charlotte Observer notes “she ...

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