Gov. Bev Perdue has appointed Rep. Trudi Walend to a seat in the NC House, ending a standoff over a veto override vote.
Earlier this afternoon, House Speaker Thom Tillis accused Perdue of playing politics with a veto override vote by delaying Walend's appointment. House Republicans need every vote they can get to override Perdue's veto of Senate Bill 9, the Racial Justice Act repeal.
The Governor's office now says Walend has been appointed.
“Rep. Walend did not file the required ethics disclosure form until sometime this afternoon -- the Governor’s office checked with the Ethics Commission at both 10 a.m. and 1 p.m., and the required form had not been filed," said Perdue spokeswoman Chris Mackey in a statement.
"Gov. Perdue signed Rep. Walend’s appointment shortly after learning that the required ethics disclosure had been submitted. Perhaps Speaker Tillis was not aware of the requirements of North Carolina law when he held his press conference this afternoon,” the statement concluded.
Tillis had threatened to keep the legislature in session until the appointment was made, costing taxpayers $50,000 a day. He argued the governor isn't responsible for making sure appointees had filed ethics forms.
The governor's office disagreed. "Under North Carolina law, the Governor cannot fill legislative vacancies until the nominee files an ethics disclosure form with the North Carolina Ethics Commission," wrote Perdue spokesman Mark Johnson. "N.C.G.S. 138A-22(a) states that '[e]very covered person subject to this Chapter who is elected, appointed, or employed, including one appointed to fill a vacancy in elective office . . . shall file a statement of economic interest with the Commission prior to the covered person's initial appointment...'”
The appointment clears the way for a veto override vote in the House tonight. They're in recess till 6:30.
The Senate already voted this afternoon to override the veto. The 31-19 vote was along party lines.