No, Iâ€™m not talking about the weather, although it has been rather warm here lately.Â Iâ€™m referring to the political environment.Â And I couldnâ€™t be happier to see it happening.Â You might ask what is going on that is causing this type of climate change? Â Well, it isn’t Al Gore, that’s for certain. Â Take a lookâ€¦
NORTH CAROLINA 3rd STATE TO BAR PLANNED PARENTHOOD FROM PARTICIPATING IN PUBLIC HEALTH PROGRAMS
State Legislature Overrides Governorâ€™s Veto, Strips Planned Parenthood of State Funding
Then there is also this…
Response from Senate President Pro Tempore Phil Berger:
â€œIn countless frivolous lawsuits, trial lawyers win big and drive up health care costs for everyone. Yet Gov. Perdue chose to cater to special interests instead of reducing medical costs and improving access to care for all North Carolinians,â€ said Senate President Pro Tempore Phil Berger (R-Rockingham). â€œThe legislature passed a strong bipartisan bill allowing patients to recover full medical expenses and lost wages, and up to $500,000 for additional â€˜noneconomic damagesâ€™ including pain and suffering. No matter how she spins it, a veto is a veto, and this one deals a severe blow to the stateâ€™s medical community and every citizen struggling to cope with the skyrocketing cost of health care.â€
Like the original version of Senate Bill 33, the bipartisan conference report sets a $500,000 cap on the amount juries can award for pain and suffering and other â€œnoneconomic damages.â€ But the new cap does not apply if a defendantâ€™s act of gross negligence, fraud, intentional failure, malice, or reckless disregard for the rights of others results in someoneâ€™s death, disfigurement, permanent injury, or loss of a body part. And patients still can recover all medical costs and lost income.
The bill protects doctors and medical personnel from frivolous lawsuits that force them to perform unnecessary procedures and tests. Every North Carolinian pays for that defensive medicine through higherÂ insurance costs and taxpayer-funded medical programs for the poor
(No word yet whether Legislature will try to override Perdue’s veto on malpractice)
Gov. Perdue signs into law legislation requiring some NC firms to check workersâ€™ immigration status (Yes, Miracles Do Happen!!)
Gov. Perdue vetoes No Dues Checkoff for School Employees legislation (Probably because it included the followingâ€¦)
Any beneficiary who is a member of a domiciled employees’ or retirees’ association that hasÂ at least 2,000 members, the majority of whom are active or retired employees of the State orÂ public school employees,Â StateÂ may authorize, in writing, the periodic deduction from theÂ beneficiary’s retirement benefits a designated lump sum to be paid to the employees’ or retirees’Â association. The authorization shall remain in effect until revoked by the beneficiary. A plan of deductions pursuant to this section shall become void if the employees’ or retirees’ association engages in collective bargaining with the State, any political subdivision of the State, or any local school administrative unit. (emphasis mine)
What you see listed here is just the tip of iceberg, really.Â The NCGA has been pretty active since November 2010, making up for an over 100-year drought.
The NC General Assembly is now out of office until July 15th.Â Upon its return, it will address any unresolved legislation, voter election laws, and redistricting.
I live in NC, and Iâ€™ve often lamented on the lack of leadership on the conservative side of the spectrum in this stateâ€¦someone who would inspire people to get more involved locally.
I suppose that may sound strange to other people who donâ€™t live here. Â If you know who Richard Burr is, then you probably have part of the answer. (Saying he’s a milquetoast Republican is actually shading things a bit in his favor). Â But there’s more to it than just that.
This is a state that quite literally went 50/50 in 2008, just barely giving Obama a win in the Presidential election.Â The voting trend in last November shifted back to the Republican side, as witnessed by having both House and Senate winning Republican majorities.Â Itâ€™s the first time that has occurred in NC since the late 1800â€™s!Â Even that shift in trends speaks volumes.
Beyond all that, try to visualize a politically conservative bonfire drenched with some gasoline waiting for a match, and you have an idea of what the underlying political environment has been like in this state.Â I think the Dems were hoping to…ahem, urinate on the bonfire to avoid any situation where the fire would be lit, butâ€¦well, too late now!Â The ensuing repetitive battle between State Legislature and Governor Perdue seems to be enough of match in this case. Â Isnâ€™t it great?
It will be interesting to see how DHHS and the Obama admin respond to the Planned Parenthood decision made by the state, but I donâ€™t think it will endear the Obama admin to NC voters at this point if the federal government interferes with the State Legislatureâ€™s new budget laws.Â There are more than enough people here with the attitude that government does too much…way, way too much.
And NC is Â what they call a â€œbattleground stateâ€, after all.