Phil Berger

RALEIGH, N.C. (AP) — The fight over the North Carolina state budget continues as Democratic Gov. Roy Cooper made a counteroffer to the two-year plan written by Republicans that he's already vetoed.

But GOP leaders remain unconvinced they'll fail to locate enough votes to override his veto. House Republicans still were trying on Tuesday to persuade enough Democratic colleagues to go against the governor.

Both the House and Senate would have to vote to override to implement the vetoed budget.

There could be term limits for the leaders of the state House and Senate under a bill moving through the legislature.

The bill could limit terms for the Speaker of the House and the Senate Leader to four consecutive two-year terms.

Senate Republicans rolled out their latest proposal for tax policy changes Thursday morning, days after House Representatives introduced their Tax Reduction Act of 2017.

For the first time Governor Roy Cooper stood before a joint session of the legislature to deliver his state of the state address.

It was a chance for Cooper to push his priorities. But given the tone of the official Republican response, that's a tall order.

Every two years North Carolina's governor is invited to give the state of the state address. And here is how Governor Roy Cooper sees it: "I want to begin by reporting to you that the state of our state is promising."

It's an interesting choice, which needed some explanation.

Jim Morrill/Charlotte Observer

Democratic Governor Roy Cooper on Tuesday introduced an HB2 repeal he framed as a compromise.  Cooper, along with Democratic party leaders Sen. Dan Blue and Rep. Darren Jackson, said the bill would address the concerns of all parties.

Speaker Tim Moore and Senate President Pro Tem Phil Berger are blasting a three-judge panel's granting of a temporary restraining order blocking the senate from proceeding with confirmation hearings on Governor Roy Cooper's cabinet nominees.

With the General Assembly underway and the 115th Congress having convened, this week's episode of the Politics Podcast offers two scoops of political insight. For perspective from the District, Geoff Bennett of Time Warner Cable joins the program to discuss President Trump's Supreme Court nominee, and other happenings on The Hill.

Then, Senate Leader Phil Berger (R-Rockingham) sits down to discuss an assortment of topics, including the legislative agenda, House Bill 2, Governor Roy Cooper, and rural-urban divide.


Katie Peralta/Charlotte Observer

An effort to repeal HB2 flamed out as NC GOP leadership failed to corral the votes necessary.  Senate Leader Phil Berger refused to consider a clean repeal of HB2, instead offering a bill that would include a 6 month moratorium on non-discrimination ordinances across the state.  That was a non-starter for Democrats, who said they had held up their end of the bargain when the Charlotte city council fully repealed its ordinance earlier Wednesday.  After 9 hours of waiting for leadership to get the votes, several parliamentary maneuvers were introduced, that ultimately failed. 

I’ll repeal mine if you repeal yours.

That’s the message North Carolina’s Republican leaders have been sending to the Charlotte City Council the past few days. The governor and legislative leaders have said they’re prepared to repeal House Bill 2 in full if, and only if, Charlotte votes to repeal its expanded non-discrimination ordinance first.

This morning Charlotte Mayor Jennifer Roberts said no deal.

Faculty at UNC-Chapel Hill and environmental groups are raising concerns over a new effort on campus created by the General Assembly.

NBA Pulls All-Star Game From Charlotte Over HB2

Jul 4, 2016
Chuck Burton/AP

*Updated 7/21 at 6:26pm: As the NBA had been warning NC lawmakers for months, it's announced that the All-Star Game has been pulled from Charlotte because of the controversial House Bill 2.  

The NBA has released the following statement: "The NBA has decided to relocate the 2017 All-Star Game from Charlotte with the hope of rescheduling for 2019.

 State Senate Leader Phil Berger says he doesn’t envision any changes to House Bill 2 during the short session that begins Monday, including one revision requested by Gov. Pat McCrory. He also said he’ll push for a 2 percent state budget increase, including another round of teacher raises. 

Tom Bullock/WFAE News

Updated Thursday 7:17 am

Clergy and advocates differ whether judicial officials are obligated by law to carry out civil same-sex marriages in North Carolina even if they object to gay marriage based on religious grounds.

Several people addressed Wednesday a House judiciary panel considering a Senate bill approved last week that would allow a magistrate or assistant or deputy register of deeds to refuse to carry out marriage duties.

AP/Gerry Broome

Some North Carolina court officials could opt out of marriage duties — including same-sex marriages — under legislation given the state Senate's approval.

The Senate voted 32-16 Wednesday for a bill giving magistrates and some register of deeds workers the ability to remove themselves from the process because of religious objections. The bill comes after federal judges' in October overturned North Carolina's same-sex marriage ban.

Mountain XPress

A local legislator in the General Assembly is taking a stand for same-sex couples.  Democratic Senator Terry Van Duyn of Buncumbe County joined a press conference this morning denouncing a bill that sponsors say protects religious freedom.  Senate leader Phil Berger introduced the bill that would allow magistrates to opt out of weddings if they have conflicting religious beliefs.  That could mean anyone, but Van Duyn says same-sex couples are the ones being targeted.

AP/Gerry Broome

Gay marriage is front and center on this year's first real work day at the North Carolina General Assembly.

Senate leader Phil Berger filed a bill Wednesday that would allow magistrates to refuse to preside at same-sex weddings and assistant registers of deeds to not issue licenses based on religious convictions. But they wouldn't be involved in traditional marriages either.

Berger had said he'd file a recusal bill after judges last October struck down North Carolina's constitutional amendment banning gay marriage.

Angie Newsome via carolinapublicpress.org

The North Carolina legislature is back in town and ready to work for the year following a two-week break.

The House and Senate planned to reconvene the General Assembly session at midday Wednesday. Little debate was expected on the first day, but lawmakers were expected to file an early flurry of bills. Two chambers elected Republican favorites Speaker Tim Moore and Senate leader Phil Berger to their leadership posts on Jan. 14, then went home.

ncleg.net

The North Carolina General Assembly is heading back to work with a new group of 170 legislators for the next two years.

The legislature scheduled its one-day organizational session to begin Wednesday morning.

Republicans who remain in charge of the House and Senate are expected to elect their favorites to run the chambers — Phil Berger of Eden as Senate leader and Tim Moore of Kings Mountain as House speaker. Lawmakers will go home until Jan. 28, when they'll begin in earnest to file bills and debate legislation.