Raleigh, N.C. — House and Senate committees finally got down to work Tuesday, moving a couple of education-related bills, but there was more action outside the Legislative Building, where partisan fighting was in full bloom.
Democratic Gov. Roy Cooper reiterated the need for a quick repeal of House Bill 2, the state law limiting LGBT rights so the NCAA doesn't blackball North Carolina from hosting championship events for the next six years. State Republican Party Chairman Robin Hayes responded by saying Cooper blocked previous GOP efforts to roll back the law, so it's his problem now and he needs to devise a workable solution.
Democratic State Attorney General Josh Stein added North Carolina to the list of states fighting Republican President Donald Trump's temporary halt to immigration from seven predominantly Muslim countries, saying it amounts to "religious discrimination." Hayes called that stance wrong, saying the president is merely trying to protect Americans from terrorism.
In court, a three-judge panel heard but didn't rule on Cooper's request to put a new law requiring Senate confirmation of his cabinet appointees on hold. Lawyers for the Republican-controlled Senate say they have the right to advise and consent on nominees, while Cooper's attorneys argue the legislature is overstepping its authority. The first confirmation hearing is set for Wednesday morning.