‘Where was McCrory’s concern for Constitution when marriage was under attack?’ asks Tami Fitzgerald
By M.H. Cavanaugh
Christian Action League
November 20, 2014
RALEIGH – A respected and beloved North Carolina Christian Activist, Tami Fitzgerald, has released a statement leveling criticism at North Carolina’s Republican Governor, Pat McCrory. Fitzgerald is formerly the chairwoman of Vote FOR Marriage NC, and currently the executive director of the N.C. Values Coalition.
Her criticism follows Governor McCrory’s decision to sue the state’s legislative leadership to prohibit their ability to appoint members of independent state commissions. The Governor argues their power to appoint commissions encroaches upon his executive powers. Former Governors Jim Hunt and Jim Martin have joined the Governor in the lawsuit.
In a press statement the Governor stated:
“Upon taking office, I took an oath to uphold and defend the North Carolina Constitution. I have a duty to the people of North Carolina and future governors to protect the longstanding principles enshrined in our state’s constitution.”
But Fitzgerald wonders if the Governor’s remarks are nothing more than high-sounding political rhetoric. In her statement released to the press she argues that there has been a stark contrast between the Governor’s response to an opportunity to expand his powers and his poor response in defense of North Carolina’s Constitutional Marriage Amendment.
“Where was the Governor’s concern for the defense of our Constitution when a rogue judge enjoined the Marriage Amendment that 61% of NC voters passed?
“It is a shame when our Governor is more interested in expanding his executive power than he is actually protecting and defending a real threat to our Constitution – the overreach of power by a federal judge who enjoined the Marriage Amendment and forced same-sex marriage on our State.
“Governor McCrory’s response to the federal government’s oppressive intrusion into a matter of state sovereignty as important as defining marriage was inaction. It was President Pro-Tempore Phil Berger and Speaker Thom Tillis who stepped forward to defend marriage in our state when neither Governor McCrory nor Attorney General Roy Cooper would.”
Reporter, Mark Binker of WRAL News noted, “Fitzgerald’s missive represents another crack between McCrory and key GOP constituencies he might draw on during a 2016 re-election campaign.”
Dr. Mark Creech, executive director of the Christian Action League said that Fitzgerald’s concerns are on target. “Of course, social conservatives like Fitzgerald, I, and others are slow to criticize a Republican administration. We’re slow to do it because they are largely in agreement with the values we represent. But we are derelict in our duty if we simply ignore when Republican leaders, even our Governor, demonstrate confusion of priority.”
Dr. Creech argued the Governor’s promise to veto an abortion bill in 2013 unless it was modified to address concerns from the Department of Health and Human Services, and assuage worries that the measure would limit women’s access to abortion, severely weakened the measure.
“The final version of the bill was signed by the Governor and still did many good things,” said Dr. Creech. “But if the Governor had left the matter alone and not threatened a veto, I’m convinced the measure as it was written could have closed most of the abortion clinics in the state.”
After the most recent rulings from the federal courts knocking down North Carolina’s Constitutional Marriage Amendment, McCrory’s response offered no rebuke or defense against judicial supremacy, simply stating:
“The administration is moving forward with the execution of the court’s ruling and will continue to do so unless otherwise notified by the courts. Each agency will work through the implications of the court’s ruling regarding its operations.”
When Magistrates in the state were informed by the Administrative Office of the Courts (AOC) that they must perform same-sex marriages or lose their jobs, the Governor was silent on the matter. It was Senate President Pro-Tempore, Phil Berger and other Senate Republicans who sought to protect their religious freedom.
“There are three issues of fundamental importance to social conservatives,” said Dr. Creech. “They are the sanctity of human life, marriage and the family, and religious liberty. At this point the Governor seems to be striking out on all three. Is he with us or not? Tami Fitzgerald is simply voicing what we’re all asking,” said Dr. Creech. “I would that he would show us the same fervor about these issues of fundamental moral and constitutional import as his call for puppy mill legislation.”
On Thursday Governor McCrory suggested North Carolinians donate to local animal shelters or pet adoption non-profits in honor of his wife’s birthday. The Governor has often urged North Carolina lawmakers to pass legislation to restrict puppy mills.