Governor Cooper Vetoes GOP Deception Session Legislation

RALEIGH

Today, Governor Cooper vetoed SB 3 and HB 3, which further weaken the foundation of checks and balances in state government.

Republican legislators called a special session with less than 24-hours notice Tuesday to ram through bills with no public input. HB 3 seeks to cement misleading ballot descriptions of constitutional amendments that actually roll back basic separation of powers in state government. SB 3 retroactively changes the rules for one Republican candidate running for Supreme Court after the close of filing in order to rig the race and further the Republican manipulation of the judicial system.

“Legislative Republicans want to roll back checks and balances in order to pick their own judges and put special interests in charge of education, voting, clean water and more. Republican legislators are shamefully attempting to mislead voters in order to undermine our state’s constitution and weaken the separation of powers between the branches of government,” said Governor Cooper.

Governor Cooper’s Veto Messages:

House Bill 3, AN ACT TO CLARIFY THE DESIGNATIONS TO APPEAR ON THE BALLOT FOR CONSTITUTIONAL AMENDMENTS AND OTHER REFERENDA.

These proposed constitutional amendments would dramatically weaken our system of checks and balances. The proposed amendments also use misleading and deceptive terms to describe them on the ballot.

This bill compounds those problems by stopping additional information that may more accurately describe the proposed amendments on the ballot. Voters should not be further misled about the sweeping changes the General Assembly wants to put in the constitution.

Therefore, I veto the bill.

Senate Bill 3, AN ACT TO CLARIFY POLITICAL PARTY DISCLOSURE ON THE BALLOT FOR JUDICIAL RACES IN 2018.

Changing the rules for candidates after the filing has closed is unlawful and wrong, especially when the motive is to rig a contest after it is already underway. All judge elections should be free of partisanship, and continued undermining of these elections creates confusion and shows contempt for the judiciary.

Therefore, I veto the bill.