Tuesday, December 20, 2016

What's behind NC GOP's Stalinist power grab? Panic over burgeoning Moral Monday movement

North Carolina voters protest GOP powergrab on Thursday outside
state's General Assembly. Photo via The Atlantic.
Mark Joseph Stern, in Slate, explained the shocking litany of sweeping last-minute changes made by GOP super­majorities in the North Carolina House and Senate after the defeat of GOP Governor and the defeat of a conservative North Carolina Supreme Court Justice.
     Below, the Rev. William J. Barber II, a Protestant minister, president of the North Carolina NAACP and founder of Moral Mondays, a grass-roots movement for racial and economic justice, explains why the GOP is panicking:
     This brazen power grab only confirms their fear of North Carolina's interracial nonpartisan Forward Together Moral Movement, better known as "Moral Monday." According to a December 5 analysis by Public Policy Polling, "The seeds of McCrory's defeat really were planted by the Moral Monday movement," which lowered the popular Republican governor's polls from 65 to 35 and gave McCrory "39 months in a row of an underwater approval rating." Moral Monday recently helped oust McCrory and elect Justice Morgan by a total of 345,000 votes.
     Though their current attempt to block the will of the people is morally wrong, the extremist supermajority's fear of the voters is well grounded. This past July, the US Court of Appeals for the 4th District ruled in North Carolina NAACP v. McCrory that the extremists in the General Assembly had "targeted African Americans with almost surgical precision," and overturned the state's 2013 voter suppression bill.
     Another coalition victory in federal court overturned the legislature's "racial gerrymander" in 28 districts, requiring new district lines and a special election in 2017; the US Supreme Court is reviewing that case now.

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