Governor Pat McCrory and House Speaker Tim Moore gave no indication that they planned to comply with an order from the Justice Department that they stop enforcing anti-LGBT HB 2 by Monday and seemed to be studying how to defy it, an AP report suggests:
Giving no indication of yielding to pressure, North Carolina’s Republican leaders called a federal warning about the legality of the state’s new law limiting LGBT anti-discrimination rules a broad overreach by the government.
In fact, McCrory and Moore seemed incensed by the suggestion that they were violating federal law:
I thought it was a very common-sense rule, but the federal government is now saying those are discriminatory practices,” McCrory said during a Wednesday evening forum with the state’s chamber of commerce in Raleigh.
McCrory and House Speaker Tim Moore, who helped pass the law the governor signed in March, said separately they would be examining the state’s options. Moore told reporters the letter to McCrory was an attempt by President Barack Obama’s administration to push a “radical left agenda” in his final months in office.
“Basic concepts — common sense about privacy and expectations of privacy — are getting thrown out the window by what the Obama administration is trying to do in this,” Moore said.
The Justice Department told McCrory in a letter yesterday that HB 2 violates Title IX of the Civil Rights Act which deals with discrimination based on gender and that he had till Monday to indicate whether they planned to continue enforcing the law and risk hundreds of millions of dollars in federal funding.
Attorney General Roy Cooper, who is running against McCrory in the gubernatorial election, released this statement:
Enough is enough. It's time for the Governor to put our schools and economy first and work to repeal this devastating law.
— Roy Cooper (@RoyCooperNC) May 4, 2016
In an interview with the North Carolina Chamber of Commerce, McCrory called the order an “overreach” by the Obama administration.
“This is one interpretation by one agency.”
When asked if it will end up in the courts, McCrory says “I don’t know.”
Said McCrory: “I don’t think it’s the federal government’s decision but based upon the justice ruling today, apparently now it is the federal government’s decision to determine your restroom, locker room, and shower policies…”
McCrory also continued to submit the fantastical allegation that HB 2 was started by “the Left” and is a coordinated plot by the Human Rights Campaign and Democrats to vote him out of office. He also suggested that the Title IX rules were a sneak attack on him and were snuck into contracts that he had already signed.
“We anticipate the next move would be financial…we don’t know what the ramifications will be…This is being initiated by the Obama administration. Now there are contracts on my desk for federal funding that all of a sudden within these very thick contracts have restroom policies. These were not in our contracts a year ago that I signed for federal money. They’ve been slid in by the administration. So obviously this is a new initiative by the Obama administration which is coordinated through the Human Rights Commission (sic) which is coordinated through political campaigns both at the local level and the statewide level and also coordinated through some other Super PACS including Progress North Carolina and some protesters that are blowing horns right outside the mansion as we speak.”
McCrory also says he “doesn’t know” when asked his opinion about presenting the measure as a constitutional amendment as NC Senator Tom Apodaca has suggested.
Here are McCrory’s full remarks last night about the order:
And Tim Moore is standing by the bill, according to this WRAL report: