How did one of the more progressive states in the South turn into a laughingstock in just months?
More than anyone, Art Pope deserves credit.
After President Obama won the state in 2008, “Pope, his family, his company, and the network of outside political groups he’s affiliated with — Americans for Prosperity, Civitas Action, and Real Jobs NC — spent a total of over $2.2 million in the 2010 election cycle to elect Republican state lawmakers,” according to Facing South. As a result, Republicans won state houses in North Carolina for the first time in more than a century.
Two years later, Pope and his interests spent another $2 million, helping Pat McCrory become governor. In one of his first moves as governor, McCrory named Pope his budget director.
Since then, Republicans have been on a rampage, waging a war on the state’s voting rights, education system, women’s health and the unemployed. Along the way the governor has broken campaign promises and the legislature sneaked anti-choice legislation into bills on Sharia law and motorcycle safety before they danced a little jig and adjourned for the summer.
This overreach has resulted in disapproval from voters and sparked the Moral Mondays movement, resulting in hundreds of protesters being arrested.
But Art Pope is getting exactly what he bargained for — his radical agenda being enacted without delay.
Here are five things you need to know about Art Pope