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McCrory Peddles HB2 “Compromise” in Desperate Bid to Salvage Re-Election

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Governor Says He’ll Call Special Session to Repeal Anti-LGBT Bill If Charlotte First Rescinds Nondiscrimination Ordinance

Reeling from backlash over House Bill 2, North Carolina Republican Gov. Pat McCrory is now peddling a so-called compromise under which the General Assembly would repeal the horrific anti-LGBT measure if Charlotte first rescinds its nondiscrimination ordinance. 

The proposal backed by McCrory and GOP legislative leaders comes in the wake of decisions this week by the NCAA and ACC to move future championships out of North Carolina — the latest and most devastating consequence the state has suffered since HB2 took effect. 

But the proposal, similar to one the Charlotte City Council voted down in May, isn’t really a compromise at all, and seems more designed to salvage McCrory’s re-election chances than anything. Thanks in large part to the unpopularity of HB2, McCrory trails Democrat Roy Cooper — who opposes HB2 — in the polls. 

JoDee Winterhof, senior vice president of the Human Rights Campaign, called the proposal “the same cheap trick the North Carolina General Assembly has attempted all along, asking Charlotte to repeal crucial protections for the LGBTQ community and trust they will hold up their end of the bargain on a full repeal of HB2.” 

“This arrangement would create problems, not solve them,” Winterhof said in a statement. “It would require Charlotte to drop the very protections for the LGBTQ community that businesses, the NCAA and other organizations have now made clear are needed and are a priority.”

Democratic state Rep. Chris Sgro, executive director of Equality North Carolina, said the state “can’t afford more antics from” McCrory and GOP legislative leaders. 

“They are the ones who got us in this situation in the first place and are costing our state millions,” Sgro said. “Hundreds of other cities across the nation already had in place a similar ordinance to Charlotte’s. While important to the LGBT community, it was not unique. What is unique and dangerous is HB2. It’s HB2 that cost us the NCAA, ACC, and the NBA. It’s HB2 that’s causing us economic harm, and it’s HB2 that needs to be repealed. Enough games and blame — repeal HB2.”

The proposed compromise reportedly was brokered by the North Carolina Restaurant & Lodging Association, which issued a statement Friday saying it had received assurances from GOP legislative leaders that if the Charlotte City Council repeals the nondiscrimination ordinance on Monday, the General Assembly will meet as early as next week to get rid of HB2. 

McCrory’s office later confirmed the deal, according to a report in The Charlotte Observer. 

“For the last nine months, the governor has consistently said state legislation is only needed if the Charlotte ordinance remains in place,” said spokesman Josh Ellis. “If the Charlotte City Council totally repeals the ordinance and then we can confirm there is support to repeal among the majority of state lawmakers … the governor will call a special session. It is the governor’s understanding that legislative leaders … agree with that assessment.”

Also Friday, McCrory quietly withdrew the lawsuit he filed against the federal government defending HB2.  

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NOT HOW THIS WORKS

Busted: White House Counsel Worked to Keep Whistleblower Report From Congress – WaPo

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President Donald Trump’s White House counsel has reportedly been personally involved in keeping Congress from reviewing a whistleblowing report involving Ukraine.

“The revelation that Trump pushed Zelensky to pursue the Biden probe, which was first reported by The Wall Street Journal, represents the most detailed account so far of the president’s conduct that prompted a U.S. intelligence official to file a whistleblower action against the president,” The Washington Post reported Friday. “The disclosure comes amid new details about the White House’s role in preventing Director of National Intelligence Joseph Maguire from complying with Congressional demands for the material in the complaint.”

In addition to confirming the WSJ report, The Post also furthered the story with new reporting on the role of the White House in the scandal.

“White House Counsel Pat Cipollone has been engaged in the matter since shortly after the whistleblower action surfaced, officials said, helping to identify legal obstacles to the sharing of information that could be politically damaging to Trump,” The Post reported. “Cipollone’s involvement reveals a more direct White House role in the dispute than has previously been reported.”

Read the full report.

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IMPEACHABLE OFFENSES

Trump Urged Ukraine President ‘About Eight Times’ to Work With Giuliani to Get Dirt on Biden’s Son: WSJ

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The Wall Street Journal is reporting that President Donald Trump “repeatedly pressured” the president of Ukraine to work with his personal attorney, Rudy Giuliani, to get dirt on the son of his top political opponent, former Vice President Joe Biden.

In a July phone call Trump urged President Volodymyr Zelensky “about eight times to work with Rudy Giuliani,” the Wall Street Journal says.

But the Journal’s reporting in the second paragraph offers details that appear to minimize what experts have been suggesting actually happened. The Journal’s report also does not name sources or even suggest if they are White House or intelligence community officials.

“Mr. Trump didn’t mention a provision of foreign aid to Ukraine on the call, said this person, who didn’t believe Mr. Trump offered the Ukrainian president any quid-pro-quo for his cooperation on an investigation,” the Journal says.

That would lessen the magnitude of the allegations against President Trump, although they would still be impeachable offenses.

Related: Trump to Meet With Ukrainian President Amid Bombshell Whistleblower Allegations

The Trump team has become expert at controlling the national conversation and forging a narrative that bends most elements of truth, then getting the conservative base to believe them.

This is a breaking news and developing story. Details may change. This story will be updated, and NCRM will likely publish follow-up stories on this news. Stay tuned and refresh for updates.

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IMPEACH

Some Among Democratic Base Grow Increasingly Frustrated as Pelosi Issues Statement Chastising Trump Over Whistleblower

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Statement  Does Not  Say ‘Impeachment’

Some among the Democratic base appear frustrated with Speaker of the House Nancy Pelosi who has not been supportive of the majority of House Democrats who want to impeach President Donald Trump. Friday afternoon the Speaker quietly issued a lengthy statement responding to the bombshell news that a whistleblower has filed a “credible” and “urgent” complaint with the intelligence community.

Pelosi’s statement, which was not posted to her social media accounts as of this writing, made its way through Twitter via a handful of reporters.

“If the President has done what has been alleged, then he is stepping into a dangerous minefield with serious repercussions for his Administration and our democracy,” Pelosi said, as a Politico congressional reporter pointed out:

Nearly two-thirds of House Democrats support impeaching Trump, or beginning a formal impeachment inquiry at the very least, according to Politico. But the majority of the nation does not, nor do a majority of Democratic voters, according to recent polls.

“Only 37 percent support beginning impeachment proceedings, while half oppose it,” Politco reports, citing its own polls.

Speaker Pelosi’s statement concludes with this:

“We will continue to follow the facts and explore every possible option to ensure the American people get the truth. We would hope that Republicans would join us in supporting the Constitution.”

Some online are calling her statement “weak,” while others are disappointed with the lack of specific threats of action, and others are expressing exasperation with the Speaker not supporting impeachment:

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