North Carolina Republicans tried to block a public debate over anti-LGBT law
The North Carolina Republican Party tried to block a bipartisan public forum discussing the chaos caused by an anti-LGBT law, because the Governor is up for re-election.
North Carolina has lost a string of big investment ventures over Republican Governor Pat McCrory’s decision to sign the contentious HB 2 – which voided all local ordinances protecting LGBT rights, banned transgender people from using their preferred bathroom, and permits businesses to discriminate against LGBT people on the grounds of religious belief.
The state has been plunged into crisis over the law, and the Charlotte Observer had planned a public forum on the issue for November 2.
However, Slate reports that the state’s GOP tried to block the event, filing a complaint with the North Carolina State Board of Elections, alleging it was a campaign finance violation as McCrory struggles in a re-election against Democrat Roy Cooper.
The GOP claimed that the event was in violation because it might discuss polling data commissioned from Public Policy Polling – which the party alleges “has an bias in favour of the Democrat Party and its’ candidates” because its CEO has made private political donations.
The Republicans alleged: “The polling data that will be presented and discussed was compiled by Dean Debnam’s company PPP, LLC, and includes specific polling data on the race between Governor Pat McCrory and Roy Cooper.
“While this event is being advertised as nothing more than a forum, its proximity in time to the general election and its focus on an issue repeatedly raised by the Democrat party and Roy Cooper belies the true purpose and motivation behind the event.”
The party claimed: “The clear purpose of the alleged forum is to provide a ‘no cost’ media event and live ‘infomercial’ for Roy Cooper, Democrat candidates and the North Carolina Democrat Party.
“It cannot be legitimately argued that this forum does not constitute the providing of something of value to Roy Cooper, Democrat candidates and the North Carolina Democrat Party.
“As such, this forum, which is being hosted by an alleged news agency corporation that has endorsed Roy Cooper and various democrat candidates, and which is sponsored by a limited liability company whose managers have vocally and financially supported Roy Cooper and the Democrat Party, constitutes an illegal campaign contribution to Roy Cooper, and the North Carolina Democrat Party.”