Is the Coronavirus a Republican or Democrat? | Beaufort County Now | There was a time in March when it felt like we were all united in attacking COVID-19, but that honeymoon was short lived. By the end of April, the virus had become partisan. | my spin, tom campbell, coronavirus, covid-19, partisanship, republican, democrat, june 25, 2020

Coronavirus Disease 2019 (COVID-19)

Is the Coronavirus a Republican or Democrat?

Tom Campbell
    There was a time in March when it felt like we were all united in attacking COVID-19, but that honeymoon was short-lived. By the end of April, the virus had become partisan.

    If you listen to some voices you would believe the coronavirus and its disastrous repercussions are the faults of one man: Roy Cooper. That's the narrative increasingly coming from Republicans and those on the right. They ask, "Why does one man have so much power to make decisions that affect us all?" Or, "Why won't he listen to the legislature when they dictate the opening of bars, gyms, bowling alleys, and nightclubs?" They generally conclude with, "Doesn't he know he has wrecked the economy of our state, that there are more than a million people out of work?" Those and other questions will only be intensified after the Governor's announcement keeping Phase Two restrictions in force.

    Democrats are equally emphatic things would not have gotten so bad had President Trump not initially refused to recognize the pandemic, been willing to develop a coherent and consistent national strategy, and accepted any accountability.

    Here's my spin: The coronavirus doesn't care to which political party you belong, where you live, or anything else. While it might be easy to place blame on a governor or even the president let's put the blame where it belongs - on the virus.

    The biggest criticism of Governor Cooper centers around his singular power in making decisions. People forget we elected him to be Governor, the chief executive officer of our state. Our Statutes grant the executive extraordinary powers during times of emergency. Governor Cooper could blunt some of the criticisms if he would tell us who he consults, gives their names, and say how often he does so. I could perhaps agree that the governor should consult with and seek consensus from the Council of State with two reservations. First, I have watched committees deliberate decisions and the process does not lend itself to timely and decisive action in times of crisis. At least now we have one person to hold accountable.

    Further, I could be more supportive if there was some confidence those statewide elected officials would give nonpartisan advice. This Council of State already proved they wouldn't do so when Republican members signed a petition attempting to force Cooper to consult with them. No Democrats signed that petition.

    Yes, there is a statute which says the Governor should get concurrence from the Council of State in some instances, however, it is so vague and poorly written that a former Supreme Court justice said a case could be made for requiring concurrence, but could just as equally support the position the governor didn't have to do so. The legislature is attempting to change that statute but would do well to consider setting a precedent they may someday regret. One day there will be another Republican governor perhaps forced to face an unfriendly Democratic majority in the Council of State.

    The virus doesn't care about any of this, but we should. I hope you agree we are weary of the partisan bickering at a time when we should be uniting to fight this virus. The health of our people and our economy is more important than partisan infighting. We are better than this.


    Publisher's note: Tom Campbell is former assistant North Carolina State Treasurer and is creator/host of NC SPIN, a weekly statewide television discussion of NC issues that airs on UNC-TV main channel Fridays at 7:30pm, Sundays 12:30pm and UNC North Carolina Channel Fridays at 10:00pm, Saturdays at 4:00pm and Sundays at 10:00am. Contact Tom at NC Spin.


HbAD0

Latest Op-Ed & Politics

With the U.S. Supreme Court shutting the door this month on future legal action, a state Supreme Court decision will continue to dictate the University of North Carolina’s compliance with public records requests linked to sexual assaults.
Army relieves dozens of soldiers for political reasons
Vice President Mike Pence reportedly called Vice-President Elect Kamala Harris on Thursday to congratulate her on her win.
The Pentagon has reportedly turned down a request from President Donald Trump to have an extravagant sendoff from the White House, nixing the president’s plans to have a military parade at Joint Base Andrews before he departs Washington, D.C.
Many of us are very frustrated with the present political situation in both North Carolina and the Washington, D. C.

HbAD1

Gov. Roy Cooper is again pushing for a multibillion-dollar infrastructure bond, but Republican leaders caution that North Carolina’s still-unsteady economy makes it impossible to tell whether it would be prudent.
Order to release information within 180 days was part of $2.3 trillion COVID-19 relief bill
Clarice Feldman of the American Thinker explores the political calculations linked to President Trump’s second impeachment.
Governor Roy Cooper announced today that the North Carolina Executive Mansion will be illuminated on January 19, 2021, at 5:30 PM in remembrance of the lives lost as in the COVID-19 pandemic.
In her fine opinion piece for the Martin Center, Megan Zogby bemoans the “Quixotic” requirement that North Carolina college and university students take between two and four courses in a language such as Spanish, French, or German.
In this installment, we will discuss the "controversial" Gospel of Judas and how it can be used to decipher cryptic messages made by actors portraying the role of "Judas" in the current political arena..

HbAD2

Frank Main and Fran Spielman write in the Chicago Sun-Times about one consequence of the recent nationwide attack on police.

HbAD3

 
Back to Top