Folks (like me) who pay close attention to politics should be noticing a developing pattern that could prove quite useful to North Carolina Republicans in November — IF they can extract their heads from the sand in time.
Roy Cooper, despite what the leftist Democrat fronts called The N&O and WRAL say, is a lot like that emperor in that old fable who wasn’t wearing any clothes.
Cooper barely scraped by the incompetent McCrory campaign in 2016. His tenure as state attorney general was nothing to write home about. But you wouldn’t know it from listening to our state’s dwindling, money-bleeding drive-by media. His gubernatorial term has been less than impressive as well. But the drive-bys won’t tell you about that. They’ll trumpet polling from the Democrat consultants at Public Policy Polling (PPP) that tells us (1) Ol’ Roy has a 72% approval rating and (2) the 2020 governor’s race is all but over. To quote the great philosopher Bluto Blutarsky: “It ain’t over ’til we say it is.”
The word that shines brightly like neon for me, when I think of Roy Cooper’s tenure in Raleigh, is MISMANAGEMENT.
As attorney general, Roy Cooper oversaw the state crime lab. During that period, a load of criminal cases got overturned / tossed out thanks to various and sundry procedural hijinks within the lab. Things got backlogged in the state crime lab so badly that — to get timely results — local governments were forced to subcontract with private labs to do the forensics work for their law enforcement personnel. The whole issue with untested rape kits that briefly bedeviled Josh Stein? The same problem was there under attorney general Roy Cooper. Yet the Re-elect McCrory crowd couldn’t bring themselves to bring any of that up (at least in a coherent manner) in 2016.
Things haven’t gotten much better since ol’ Roy moved over to Blount Street. Treasurer Dale Folwell criticized what he saw as financial mismanagement at NCDOT and demanded Cooper fire the transportation secretary. Cooper and his team responded with insults and a whole lot of partisan invective. Meanwhile, the DOT secretary discreetly exited stage left. And then state auditor Beth Wood (a Democrat) produced an audit substantiating what Folwell had alleged.
It seems like just yesterday that Dale Folwell was getting kudos from all sides for fixing the state’s unemployment benefits system. Six years or so after that happened, look where we are:
A government office putting people on hold for MORE THAN TEN HOURS. Roy Cooper shut down the state’s economy and put millions out of work. Those people turn to the state to seek unemployment benefits and get put on hold for MORE THAN TEN HOURS. Ol’ Roy made the mess. And his minions in the bureaucracy are twisting the knife and making it worse. Six members of the Council of State released a letter to Cooper where they complained about how only 43% of the folks put out of work by Roy’s lockdown — who have applied for unemployment assistance — have received help.
Yes, folks. It’s called mismanagement. Can North Carolina Republicans competently communicate that story in time to make a difference?