Editorial: NO DEALS: Legislature and McCrory should repeal HB2 - period

The General Assembly should repeal HB2 plain and simple -- and not make any demands of Charlotte.

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A CBC Editorial: Monday, Sept. 19. 2016; Editorial# 8057
The following is the opinion of Capitol Broadcasting Company

Gov. Pat McCrory and state leaders tell us HB2 has not hurt the North Carolina economy. Did they ask the dozens of communities, hundreds of businesses and thousands of workers in North Carolina that have lost work and tens of millions at the hands of the LGBT bashing legislation what they think? Obviously not.

PayPal, Deutche Bank, NBA, the NCAA and the ACC – to mention some of the most highly visible of many businesses and organizations – have recognized HB2 for the terrible discrimination it legalizes and taken their business and events elsewhere. The state’s taxpayers continue to spend money defending the bad law in the courts.

Following a week where the NCAA and the ACC announced championship events would be moved out of North Carolina, business and community leaders have grown increasingly desperate.

Lynn Minges, the head of the N.C. Restaurant and Lodging Association, revealed that she’d been given “assurances” from legislative leaders that if Charlotte repealed its nondiscrimination ordinance – the act that prompted HB2 – then the General Assembly would repeal the law.

A few days later Ned Curran, the chairman of the Charlotte Chamber of Commerce, took to the op-ed pages of The Charlotte Observer to implore the Charlotte City Council and the General Assembly to take the deal.

“The proposal being considered provides for the city to take action Monday night to effectively repeal their ordinance contingent on the legislature then being called into special session by the governor and taking the actions necessary to repeal the law by the end of the week,” wrote Curran, who also serves as chairman of the State Board of Transportation for the McCrory administration.

“No one has to concede any ground on their beliefs or motives,” Curran added. By repealing the law, all sides get to recalibrate their approach to the issues.”

We disagree with Mr. Curran. STRONGLY. There is no question that HB2 should be repealed. But there is nothing that the city of Charlotte has to rescind or “recalibrate.” They should stand firm behind their ordinance.

For months McCrory, Lt. Gov. Dan Forest, the state GOP and the legislative leadership, have been pinning the blame for the HB2 fallout, wrongly and irresponsibly, on Charlotte’s city council. The city council did nothing wrong. IT PASSED AN ORDINANCE SIMILAR TO LAWS AND ORDINANCES PASSED IN 200 OTHER COMMUNITIES AROUND THE NATION. The ordinances have been workable and responsible.

Rest assured, particularly in the highly charged atmosphere of the current campaign season, candidates are getting nervous. And they should be.

There is nothing stopping the governor from calling the General Assembly into special session. The only item for business should be simple repeal of HB2 – yes or no. That’s it. Voters would like to know how each incumbent candidate would vote on a repeal resolution. It is a key election issue.

It might not be too late, if the legislature acts quickly, for the NCAA and the ACC to reverse its decisions and restore the scheduled North Carolina events.

The problems that have befallen North Carolina after the hasty and poorly conceived passage of HB2 fall squarely on the shoulders of Gov. McCrory and the legislature’s leadership. They should have the conscience and integrity to repeal the bill, acknowledge and apologize for the terrible consequences at their hands and move on.

Charlotte should change nothing.

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