The real 2015 legislative agenda

The 2015 NCGA session opening day, with all of its pomp and flourish that no one except the legislators themselves care about, has come and gone.

The legislators feel obligated to posture for the cameras, and the media feels obligated to report what is upcoming for this year's session.

So the Democrats dredge up something about ethics reform, hoping maybe they can get the Republicans to buy into something -- anything -- they might propose (they picked the wrong thing. The GOP already has shut down the ethics reform train).

Bergermoore offers circumspect comments that are nothing but hot air, promising vaguely to work on jobs and education, two happy buzzwords that the media lap up.

Bergermoore offered the vague pablum because they were awaiting their orders for the real 2015 legislative agenda, which has now been served up by Art Pope and the Koch brothers, via Americans for Pisspoority:

One day after the state legislature returned, the conservative group Americans For Prosperity released its agenda for this year’s General Assembly.

AFP’s North Carolina leaders on Thursday released 11 bullet points outlining their priorities, most of which involve cutting taxes and reducing regulations on business.

So this year's AFP agenda is last year's AFP agenda; no surprise there. Specifically, AFP wants to continue to increase the wealth inequality gap by making Art Pope and the Koch brothers richer while making poor people even poorer:

• Defeating any efforts to expand Medicaid in North Carolina (Senate leader Phil Berger and House Speaker Tim Moore are already on board)
• Repealing or reforming the state’s capital gains tax while passing a “taxpayer bill of rights”
• Repealing the Renewable Energy Portfolio Standards law, which requires all North Carolina utilities to use renewable energy sources for a set percentage of their sales
• Expanding private school vouchers and making it easier to start more charter schools

And we know all too well that what AFP wants, AFP gets.

A look back at AFP’s agenda from last year shows a few victories: The group wanted to kill film production incentives and municipal privilege license taxes.

Because AFP is one of the Pope/Koch tentacles, and Art & the Bros run the state.

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Legislature opening with anti-gay bill

Conservative Governor of Arizona Jan Brewer vetoed a gays-not-served-here bill in Arizona last year because it was too controversial, a waste of tax payer money, and harmful to the business environment of the state.

So what is North Carolina opening with in 2015? A denial of service to LGBT North Carolinians bill. There's a legislative briefing on it in 12 days.

I'm glad it's starting to get some media coverage. Is this the right priority for the state? I don't want my tax dollars spent on straights-only signs being hung up in public agencies. Is this the platform the legislature and Governor McCrory want to run on in 2016?

Some are even going George Wallace with it calling on Governors to utilize the National Guard to enforce anti-gay discrimination.

I would hope elected officials in Raleigh would start thinking about their legacies and how they want history to remember them.

Constitution, schmonstitution

This is yet another in a long, long string of unconstitutional laws that Tillisberger/Bergermoore continue to pursue.

It is disgusting that they have no regard for the US and NC Constitutions and continue to pass laws that continue to be struck down. It's disgusting that their bigotry and hatred form the basis of passing so many of those laws. And it's disgusting that such people hold elected office.

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"I will have a priority on building relationships with the minority caucus. I want to put substance behind those campaign speeches." -- Thom Tillis, Nov. 5, 2014