RALEIGH, N.C. (AP) — As North Carolina lawmakers prepare for their annual legislative session Monday, court decisions and the court of public opinion could jeopardize the results of a careful, long-term Republican strategy to control state government.
GOP strategists first picked off vulnerable House and Senate Democrats to win majorities in 2010. Then they used the 2011 redistricting to create boundaries that helped them gain veto-proof advantages. That allowed them to push through a business-friendly, socially conservative agenda in a Southern state where progressive policies once held sway.
Now, with both houses and the governor’s office under their control, Republicans can do what they want in Raleigh.
But several GOP-backed laws have been overturned in court. And now there’s backlash over a new law limiting LGBT anti-discrimination rules by state and local governments.