Was Corey Stewart once dropped on his head? It’s a fair question. The man brings new meaning to thinking outside the realm of rationality. And do you ever wonder how Corey Stewart is still “a thing” in Prince William County? For years, he’s brought embarrassment to his county and to Virginia. And he’s still there. Now we know (hat tip to Lowell for his story on this) what Stewart wants to do for Virginia — exactly what Pat McCrory has done for North Carolina. Yeah, it is hard to stop with the BWAHAHAHAs.
I have been trying to warn Virginia of nonsense like this ever since I headed for what then appeared to be greener political pastures in North Carolina. Greener wasn’t exactly what I got. Almost immediately, the NC General Assembly to overthrew a decades-long ban on fracking, ended a half century of model civil rights legislation, struck a fateful blow against public schools, and banned gay marriage. Then they did the gerrymander of the century. When I arrived, I was in the 4th Congressional District, but shortly thereafter I was magically in the 2nd. I am now in the 6th. And it’s only been 4 years and 7 months since I moved here from Virginia. Where else can Democrats outnumber Republicans and get only 3 seats in Congress while R’s get 10? Rigged is an understatement and recent court orders barely begin to fix what’s wrong.
McCrory and the General Assembly goons targeted transgender persons in a fake attempt to persuade voters they are making them “safer,” when from the beginning it was transgender people who were in danger from the rest of the citizenry. North Carolinas Republicans and their HB2 obsession have cost the state thousands of jobs, new plants, and expanded plants and headquarters. But the targeting and scapegoating of transgendered persons continues. They only want to use a restroom in peace. Freedom of movement is supposed to be guaranteed in the US.
We’ve lost entertainment and a huge portion of the spectator sports events that made living here more enjoyable. The toll has been painful. And all of this happened because McCrory and the Republican-controlled General Assembly wanted to bring wingers out to vote against transgendered people in November. And they did (for the most part). Only trouble is that enough independents had had enough and voted for a Democrat for Governor (Roy Cooper), AG (Josh Stein) and Sec of State (Elaine Marshall).
McCrory and his General Assembly buddies also gutted unemployment insurance. They went out of their way to make poor people’s lives more difficult. They upended a solid Medicaid system with the most pathetic, almost bad-by-design, transition to a “new system.” Did I mention they hired someone against Medicaid to lead HR? They laid off thousands of teachers and drove still more out of the state. They transferred hundreds of millions of dollars from public schools to private and religious schools in contravention to our state constitution. They gutted the Department of Environmental Quality. They didn’t enforce clean up of the huge coal ash spill into the Dan River.
The North Carolina version of The Handmaid’s tale found McCrory and the General Assembly joining the vaginal probe absurdity Virginia fell for. North Carolina blue became citizen pathos instead of sky color. Oh, North Carolina Republican “leaders” are an example to the rest of the nation alright, an example of how not to be stewards of our state. Here in North Carolina, they hired antis to run everything. The foxes were in charge of the henhouse long before Trump did the same thing.
The rotten lot of them pushed through a 50-page “voting ID” bill, about which IDs were the least of it. They would disenfranchise at least 200,000 people, mostly older, poorer Democrats who no longer drive, just from the ID provision. Probably half a million more were suppressed by other provisions. As the 4th Circuit Appellate Court indicated, with almost surgical precision, the R’s targeted voting access provisions minorities tend to use. They also savaged college students rights and those of the elderly along the way.
It is against the law to use illegitimate reasons to prevent a citizen from voting. But Pat McCrory and his team were there since November 8th, day after day presenting fake evidence of “voter fraud,” when it was them defrauding North Carolinians and the nation with their lies. There never was voter fraud; there was election fraud by him, the ironically named voter Integrity Project, and the state’s Republican leaders. They waved fake lists of supposed felons. But the people on the list were not felons. They claimed they had lists of those voting in two states. That was a lie. People had either moved or simply had last names which more often than not were common names which happened more often than not to be the last names of African American or Hispanic voters.
And after weeks of defaming and unfairly shaming legitimate voters, Pat McCrory finally conceded, but not until he had made many R’s believe his lies. Oh, North Carolina has a place in the nation alright. It is the land of the new Jim Crow. It is also a land mine for LGBT people. It is a state setting its sights on women’s reproductive lives. There is almost nothing accomplished in the last century too dear to undermine.
Back in Virginia, Corey Stewart is too dumb to know McCrory and the North Carolina General Assembly made North Carolina a national laughingstock. Heck, North Carolina is now synonymous with mean-spirited, anti-human, retrograde, bad, dictatorial governance. But Stewart is too intellectually compromised to figure that out.
Meanwhile, now that he has conceded, McCrory looked genuinely happy for the first time in four years. Maybe he knows something we don’t. Did Trump appoint him to FEMA, where he can pretend to solve all the nation’s emergencies just as he pretended to do during Hurricane Matthew? McCrory did such a good job giving a gazillion press conferences (right before the election), furrowing his brow and looking serious, which is about all he can do. He even took credit for what President Obama did in supplying resources and what all the relevant localities did. McCrory even acted as if the Coast Guard were his doing.
So, Corey Stewart has exactly the opposite prescription for Virginia — a fast track back to the 18th century. My message to Virginia voters: don’t let him do it; don’t “North Carolina” Virginia, y’all.