September 14, 2017
In a primary election result that shocked the pundits, Charlotte, North Carolina voters expressed their dissatisfaction with the extreme agenda of Mayor Jennifer Roberts. Given the national attention Roberts's controversial decisions received, the loss is one political leaders across the country should take note of. When Tuesday's results were tallied, Roberts was ousted from office by her own party, defeated by Democrat Vi Lyles 46 percent to 36 percent. As Mayor of North Carolina's largest city, Roberts generated national headlines last year when she aggressively championed an extreme, citywide Sexual Orientation, Gender Identity ordinance. This measure allowed biological males to enter women's showers, bathrooms and locker rooms so long as they identify as a female on that particular day.
Trying to prevent more stories like that of abuse survivor Kaeley Haver Triller, the North Carolina legislature responded to her ordinance by quickly passing HB 2. This bill sought to protect safety and privacy in the state. This common-sense law simply required individuals to use the public bathrooms, showers, and locker rooms that correspond with the gender on their birth certificate.
While the Left has not stopped beating its "sky is falling" drum over HB 2, the facts simply don't line up with their doom-and-gloom narrative. For the second consecutive year, North Carolina was ranked #2 on Forbes's top states for doing business -- well after the enactment of HB 2. Earlier this year the North Carolina's annual hospitality report celebrated hotel and motel occupancy rates that were up 3.4 percent statewide, setting a state record. In 2017 North Carolina was ranked #1 in Site Selection Magazine's "2017 Prosperity Cup" rankings. And if that's not enough, according to recent estimates, North Carolina's population is not only growing, it's growing faster than the rest of the country. North Carolina is projected to be one of only six states to pick up electoral votes in 2020.
Though the Left is determined to mark Governor Pat McCrory's loss as a result of his HB 2 support, these other elections in North Carolina paint a different picture. Conservative Republican majorities in the House and Senate passed HB 2 and the pro-business policies that have yielded such tremendous results. The state's voters responded by re-electing them to super-majorities again last year in the 2016 election. Mayor Roberts however, the vocal instigator of the whole situation, has now gone down in defeat. Though Lyles, a current member on the City Council, ended up voting in favor of Robert's ordinance, her reluctant support caused many local voters to believe she would not aggressively push the issue the way Roberts had. Lyles now faces Republican Kenny Smith in the general election November 7th.
Tony Perkins' Washington Update is written with the aid of FRC senior writers.