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Friday, September 9, 2016

The Morning Roundup: Delusional McCrory Blames Obama, Cooper for Forcing His Hand on HB2 ... For Real

Posted By on Fri, Sep 9, 2016 at 7:41 AM

Good morning ... or for those of you recovering from Hopscotch, good afternoon. Let's get going. 1) McCrory blames Cooper, Obama for forcing him into HB 2. No, we didn't make that up. It seems the governor isn't taking his current plight well—you know, that whole getting his ass handed to him in the polls thing. So he's thinking, "Hmm. What can I do to turn the tides? Wait. I've got it. I'll blame Barack Obama and Roy Cooper for my HORRIBLE decision." Bravo, Pat. We knew you had another scummy move in you.  From the N&O: McCrory said Attorney...

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Tuesday, September 6, 2016

The Morning Roundup: Donald Trump Is Pretty Confused, and Bill Clinton’s Coming to Durham

Posted By on Tue, Sep 6, 2016 at 8:47 AM

Hope everyone had a solid Labor Day. Now, let's get back to it. 1) Donald Trump doesn't know, "OK?" It seems like a pretty fair assessment of Donald Trump's last several months to say that he disagrees with quite a few people. But now, the White House hopeful can add another foe to his list. Himself? That's right. Remember the super-hyped immigration speech he delivered in Phoenix last week—the one where he said this: For those here illegally today, who are seeking legal status, they will have one route and one route only. To return home and apply for reentry...

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Tuesday, August 30, 2016

The Morning Roundup: To Help African-Americans Learn to Love Trump, a Surrogate Depicts Hillary in Blackface

Posted By on Tue, Aug 30, 2016 at 8:55 AM

Good morning, everyone. In case you've missed it, the Donald Trump campaign is still living in a fantasy world in which black voters will actually decide the Republican nominee is their guy. Let's jump right in: 1. Trump continues to sell the "African-Americans love me" schtick, despite poll numbers that suggest he's lost his mind. Monday, he gave the Twitterverse this gem: They do? Wait a second. Let's take a look at the Aug. 29 numbers from the Monmouth University Poll. So that's 14 percent of people who are NOT white and non-Hispanic, meaning these numbers include the...

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Friday, August 26, 2016

The Morning Roundup: Hillary Shot a Campaign in Reno Just to Watch It Die

Posted By on Fri, Aug 26, 2016 at 8:46 AM

Good morning! I didn’t come up with that headline, but damn if it doesn’t fit.  Let’s dig in:  1. Behold the evisceration.  In Reno yesterday, Clinton laid into the Trump’s campaign’s alliance with what’s known as the alt-right, which is a polite term for white supremacists, including the hiring of Breitbart CEO/alleged wife beater Stephen Bannon.  Watch it below; the good stuff starts around the eight-minute mark. Or read a transcript here.   State regulators fined one of Trump’s casinos for repeatedly removing black dealers from the floor. No wonder the turn-over rate for his minority employees was way...

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Friday, July 15, 2016

The Morning Roundup: Vive La France

Posted By on Fri, Jul 15, 2016 at 8:00 AM

Another day, another terrorist attack. This story is way too damn familiar.  Last night, while a crowd of French people in Nice were watching fireworks on Bastille Day—a French holiday celebrating the day French peasants stormed the Bastille in 1790, a key event in the then-nascent French revolution—an as-yet-unnamed French-Tunisian man with a truck packed with weapons and explosives essentially mowed them over, killing at least eighty-four.  Police told to NBC News that 84 people were now confirmed dead following the attack in the coastal city of Nice. Bastille Day celebrations were transformed into scenes of chaos and carnage...

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Friday, July 1, 2016

The Morning Roundup: The HB 2 ‘Fix’ Won’t Appease the NBA, Appears DOA

Posted By on Fri, Jul 1, 2016 at 8:13 AM

1. Well, that went nowhere fast. Earlier this week—around the same time the legislature moved $500,000 in disaster relief money to its HB 2 defense fund and irony died—word leaked that Republicans were considering tweaking the law so as to keep the NBA from pulling its 2017 All-Star Game from Charlotte. Because, you know, making marginalized people suffer is all well and good until it pisses off sports fans. The proposed fix would basically require trans people to carry a state document indicating that they had undergone gender reassignment to use the facilities in schools and government buildings (nothing...

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Friday, June 24, 2016

The Morning Roundup: Anarchy in the U.K.

Posted By on Fri, Jun 24, 2016 at 8:18 AM

So, there is some news this morning from across the pond. By a 52–48 margin, the United Kingdom—swept up in the same sort of economically illiterate, racism-laced populism that gave rise to Donald Trump—voted yesterday to leave the European Union. From The New York Times:  Britain has voted to leave the European Union, a historic decision sure to reshape the nation’s place in the world, rattle the Continent and rock political establishments throughout the West. Not long after the vote tally was completed, Prime Minister David Cameron, who led the campaign to remain in the bloc, appeared in front...

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Monday, June 6, 2016

Wake County Judge Michael Denning: 'China Wouldn't Be So Bad If It Weren't for All the Chinese'

Posted By on Mon, Jun 6, 2016 at 4:25 PM

Little-known fact: There is another primary election tomorrow, June 7. The INDY made its endorsements last week. You can peruse those here before you go vote.  One of the races is for judge in Wake County Superior Court District 10C—the northwest part of the county. We've endorsed Becky Holt, who has worked in the Wake County District Attorney's Office for twenty-seven years. One of the other candidates—Tuesday's nonpartisan primary will narrow the race from five candidates to two—is Michael Denning, who is currently a judge in Wake County District Court. Denning was elected to the bench in 2010, and ran unopposed in...

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Friday, May 6, 2016

The Morning Roundup: Bathroom Segregation Now, Bathroom Segregation Forever!

Posted By on Fri, May 6, 2016 at 8:26 AM

Greetings and salutations, fellow Friday enthusiasts! Let’s jump right in.  1. Bathroom segregation now, bathroom segregation forever.  So House Speaker Tim Moore, who has a long history of hating on the gays, has decided that no, North Carolina will not answer the Department of Justice on HB 2 by the Monday deadline.  The department sent state leaders a letter Wednesday saying that the law violates the Civil Rights Act and Title IX of the Education Amendments of 1972 – a finding that could jeopardize billions in federal education funding. Those laws ban employment discrimination and discrimination in education based on...

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Monday, May 2, 2016

The Morning Roundup: In Which the NCGOP Ditches #NeverTrump for #OKFineTrump

Posted By on Mon, May 2, 2016 at 8:48 AM

Good Monday morning, fellow worker bees. As you make your way back to the mine, here are some stories we’ve been watching. But first, if you haven’t already, you really need to check out Mandy Locke’s ongoing series in The News & Observer. Locke, one of the best investigative reporters around, is digging into the Harnett County Sheriff’s Office. It’s not pretty. Here is part 1 and part 2. Onward.  1. N.C. Republicans impeach Hasan Harnett. Harnett, the NCGOP’s first African-American chairman and a tea party favorite, was deposed Saturday at a meeting of the party’s executive committee.  The North Carolina Republican...

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Friday, April 29, 2016

The Morning Roundup: McCrory Can’t Believe We’re Talking About This

Posted By on Fri, Apr 29, 2016 at 8:16 AM

Beleaguered by the still-mounting HB 2 backlash, Governor McCrory sought out some friendlier quarters, this time Fox News’s The Kelly File. As has become Republican practice, host Megyn Kelly didn’t talk about all the controversial things HB 2 did—eliminating workplace discrimination lawsuits, overriding living wage ordinances, etc.—instead choosing to focus on the only issue they think matters (and have not-terrible polling on): which bathroom transgender people decide to use.  Kelly pressed McCrory several times on the rhetoric surrounding HB2. "What is the fear about the transgender situation in the bathrooms?" she asked. "Mine is not a fear," McCrory responded....

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Friday, April 8, 2016

The Morning Roundup: Here’s Some More HB 2 Stupidity, You’re Welcome

Posted By on Fri, Apr 8, 2016 at 8:47 AM

Lots of news to get to on this beautiful Friday morning. But first, a quick reminder: Full Frame is in full swing, and there are lots and lots of flicks worth checking out.  OK, let’s go:  1. Stop fighting, guys!  The Democratic presidential primary has gotten ugly—not ugly on the level of Donald Trump’s hands, but ugly by the standards of what to now has been a mostly high-minded contest. The metrics of the race haven’t changed—Bernie is doing better than anyone thought; Hillary still has a basically insurmountable delegate lead—but the tone has, with the candidates going back and...

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Friday, March 25, 2016

The Morning Roundup: Welcome to the Fallout, Day 2. We’ve Really Screwed the Pooch Here, Haven’t We?

Posted By on Fri, Mar 25, 2016 at 9:03 AM

Morning, everyone. Let’s dive right in.  1. Did the General Assembly really not see this coming?  It’s a question worth asking. As the INDY has reported on this here blog Wednesday, it was readily apparent to anyone with eyes and a brain what would happen after the legislature rammed through the knuckle-dragging House Bill 2. Indeed, it’s happened in other states that ginned up anti-LGBT legislation. The response was utterly predictable, at least to everyone outside of 16 Jones. Businesses don’t like this—especially businesses seeking young, urban employers, which are basically the ones powering the entirety of the state’s economy right...

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Friday, March 18, 2016

This Week in the Carolina Comeback: Unemployment Shoots Up All Over the State

Posted By on Fri, Mar 18, 2016 at 12:52 PM

The "Carolina comeback" stalled earlier this year, according to the January unemployment numbers the state reported this morning. State officials found that all one hundred North Carolina counties saw a rise in unemployment from its lowest point during the December holiday season.  The state unemployment rate is 5.8 percent, down slightly from 5.9 percent in January 2015 and up from 5.3 percent in December. (The rates aren't seasonally adjusted, which might explain some of the volatility.) A total of 274,460 North Carolina residents found themselves out of work in January 2016.  The highest unemployment rate in January was 15.5...

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Tuesday, March 15, 2016

“Awesome” Turnout at Cameron Village: Election Day in Raleigh

Posted By on Tue, Mar 15, 2016 at 4:20 PM

Despite fears that confusion surrounding the state’s new voter ID law would reduce turnout and slow down lines, it appears that voting in at least two Raleigh precincts is going fairly smoothly. At around 1:30 p.m. at the Cameron Village Library, Chief Judge Barbara Abernathy said that around six hundred voters had cast their ballots. “We’ve had an awesome turnout,” she said. Voter Emily McCrary, who named presidential candidate Bernie Sanders and superintendent of public schools candidate Henry Pankey as two candidates she cast ballots for, said the whole process took her five minutes. “I think it’s important,” McCrary said...

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Tuesday, March 1, 2016

Southeast Raleigh Community Leaders Demand a “Thorough” and “Transparent” Investigation into Akiel Denkins’s Death

Posted By on Tue, Mar 1, 2016 at 7:38 PM

The day after twenty-four-year-old Akiel Denkins was shot and killed by Raleigh police officer D.C. Twiddy, community leaders met in Southeast Raleigh and called for a thorough investigation of Denkins’s death. Alongside the victim’s mother, Rolanda Byrd, North Carolina NAACP head Reverend Dr. William J. Barber spoke Tuesday morning about “historical tensions” that are pervasive in American race relations and pleaded with the media to talk about Akiel Denkins “like a human being.” “A warrant for arrest is not license to kill,” Barber said. “… [The NAACP] will provide the family the counsel and advice that they might need in...

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Monday, February 29, 2016

Southeast Raleigh Woman Claims a Police Officer Shot Her Son in the Back

Posted By on Mon, Feb 29, 2016 at 6:55 PM

In Southeast Raleigh today, a twenty-four-year-old African-American man named Akiel Denkins was shot and killed by a Raleigh police officer. Members of the community have said that Denkins was unarmed—though police say there was a weapon in his vicinity—and shot in the back seven times by a white officer. The shooting happened around noon today outside of PJ’s Grill and Groceries on Bragg Street. Denkins’s mother, Roland Byrd, told ABC11, "He was running away. They couldn't catch him, so they shot at him seven times. Everybody seen it. … They ain't gonna get away with this one, there's at...

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Friday, February 5, 2016

The Morning Roundup: Is It Sunday Yet?

Posted By on Fri, Feb 5, 2016 at 9:05 AM

via GIPHY via GIPHY Greetings, comrades and fellow travelers. Perhaps—but probably not—you, like I, stayed up late (late, at my age, apparently means 11:15) to watch the Democratic tête-à-tête in a little town called Durham … New Hampshire. Who won? you ask. I imagine that depends on which candidate you supported going in. To my mind—which was clouded by the bottle of barley wine I’ll be blogging about later today—Hillary was too aggressive toward the generally likable Bernie, but Bernie came off as a one-trick pony and totally collapsed on foreign policy. And it shouldn’t have taken Hillary 12...

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Monday, February 1, 2016

The Morning Roundup: A big night in Iowa and a big day for voter rights in NC

Posted By on Mon, Feb 1, 2016 at 8:56 AM

Happy Monday, everybody. Let’s get right to it:  1. So, fellow politics junkies, tonight’s the night. The first actual ballots cast in the 2016 presidential race (albeit in a weird and quirky caucus system that somehow favors both progressives and evangelicals and affords disproportionate power to white, rural and often very religious people).  As The New York Times opines this morning:  It’s easy to grouse about Iowa’s outsize role. It forces candidates who never stood in a cornfield to pay homage to farm subsidies of questionable merit. It skews Republicans’ stances to the evangelical right, and Democrats’ to the...

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Friday, January 29, 2016

The Morning Roundup: Ted Cruz hates Trump, Tim Moore hates teachers, the economy hates us all

Posted By on Fri, Jan 29, 2016 at 8:47 AM

Happy Friday! So who won last night’s Republican debate? The guy who didn’t show? Or maybe one of the losers on the undercard? Or maybe moderator Megyn Kelly, who really rode this “Donald is afraid of me” thing for all it was worth? Or was it, you know, Hillary Clinton, who looks better and better the longer the Republicans’ once-vaunted “deep bench” is out on display.  Or did Trump’s absence merely show that, minus his pomposity and bellicosity, this collection of vacuous “thinkers” and wannabe populists is not only terrifying, but also boring?  Hmmm. Here’s some video of Ted Cruz...

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Wednesday, January 20, 2016

Apex, the peak of good living, has a pretty goddamn great idea here

Posted By on Wed, Jan 20, 2016 at 5:14 PM

UPDATE/CORRECTION: Orange County has one of these, too. Whether you're in the market for a vintage Eames chair or a crate of black-market Chinese pharmaceuticals, Craigslist's got you covered. The only problem is the often-uncomfortable exchange between buyer and seller, which typically takes place at the seller's home. No matter how normal and nice the seller seems, there's always a chance your head's going to end up in a jar in the refrigerator.  UNTIL NOW. Or, sort of, at least, in Apex, North Carolina. As of today, the Apex Police Department has established a designated spot in its parking lot where...

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Wednesday, January 13, 2016

N.C. Rep. Paul Stam is here to help you with your gambling problem

Posted By on Wed, Jan 13, 2016 at 2:23 PM

In anticipation of tonight’s $1.5 billion Powerball drawing, Rep. Paul Stam, R-Apex, sent out a press release to impart some words of wisdom unto us dolts who've been brainwashed into playing the North Carolina Education Lottery. The largest-value “jackpot” in the history of the NC Lottery is up for grabs Wednesday night at $1.5 billion. Unfortunately, this also means that gamblers are prey to deceptive advertising techniques that the NC “Education” Lottery has employed since its inception. The problem is that there are not that many “jacks” in the “pot.” The NC “Education” Lottery advertises the “jackpot” at $1.5...

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Thursday, January 7, 2016

If Mama ain't happy … The most honest News and Observer obit ever

Posted By on Thu, Jan 7, 2016 at 12:06 PM

Readers of the News & Observer obit pages were treated Thursday to an epic seven-paragraph tale of a life that "seemed like a soap opera ... a modern day tragedy." Whoever authored the obituary for Wilma Marie Voliva Black, who died Dec. 22 in Knightdale at the age of 94, definitely had Wilma's back, and woe to those at the end of her life who didn't. The story begins grippingly with the birth of a tough gal born to a tough mom. From the N&O: Wilma Marie Voliva Black struggled into life over 94 years ago. Alone, Eva realized that her...

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Tuesday, December 22, 2015

House Majority Leader Mike Hager bemoans gerrymandering, declines to do anything about it

Posted By on Tue, Dec 22, 2015 at 4:25 PM

Colin Campbell has a piece in The News & Observer today highlighting that 53 state legislators are running unopposed in their bids for re-election next year. (The INDY reported the same thing yesterday, FWIW.) That fact alone paints a pretty dismal picture of our state’s democracy, but a quote from a certain state legislator in particular, however, sticks out as especially perplexing: “Ideally we would like to have candidates in every race,” said House Majority Leader Mike Hager, a Republican from Rutherfordton who’s running unopposed. But Hager admits that recruiting candidates in heavily Democratic districts is a hard sell. “Why...

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Friday, November 20, 2015

Report touts benefits for workers and the economy in raising wages for public employees

Posted By on Fri, Nov 20, 2015 at 12:54 PM

When Orange County builder Mark Marcoplos told me earlier this month that it's time for a living wage debate, he was on to something.  Orange County's Living Wage Campaign hit the ground running this month, enlisting more than 30 local businesses to agree upfront to pay their employees a "living wage," or about $12.75 per hour in Orange County. Earlier this year, Durham launched its own campaign, guaranteeing workers hourly pay of at least $12.53. And this week, Wake County commissioners agreed to raise the minimum wage for all county workers to a solid $13.50 an hour.  Fittingly, on...

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