Lying is such a complicated business, isn't it?
Rep. Darren Jackson, D-Wake, and Minority leader, said he had been informed by Rep. David Lewis, R-Harnett, that there would be no votes taken in Wednesday’s morning session. Following Tuesday’s House floor session, Lewis texted a WRAL reporter “no votes 8:30” when asked about Wednesday’s session agenda.
“I know that (Rep Jackson’s) trust in me has been shaken, but I did not have the authority to conduct no votes,” Lewis said during Wednesday afternoon’s floor session when all members at the legislature were present.
If you'll recall, Lewis started out claiming that he never told Jackson "no votes at 8:30," and then he changed it to "no mini-budget votes will be taken." But now it's "I did not have the authority." The truth is, he was a critical element in a plot to deceive Democratic lawmakers, whether he was a "knowing" element or not. And if you're wondering why Lewis would allow himself to take so much flak over this issue: He is not an attorney. But Tim Moore is, and subject to potential actions by the NC Bar Association. And the ethical implications of this stunt are wide-ranging:
Conducting a veto override vote with so many Democratic members absent serves “to disenfranchise the electorate,” said Darryl Scriven, dean of Winston-Salem State University’s College of Arts, Sciences, Business and Education. He also served as associate director of education and director of the Bioethics Honors program at Tuskegee University.
“If their legislators are not in the room, especially on something as important as the state budget, it means (their constituents) were not represented in the veto vote regardless of how House leadership portrayed the circumstances around the vote,” Scriven said.
“It says something is clearly broken in the legislature for that kind of vote to occur.”
Scriven said the House GOP leadership’s veto override tactics strikes of subterfuge even if there was an honest miscommunication by Lewis to Jackson about whether votes would be taken during the Wednesday morning session.
There is no possible scenario that comes out smelling clean. Subterfuge was at the core of this successful vote; it couldn't have happened without it. And I'm getting sick and tired of media and others blaming Democrats for being "naive" or "trusting" or whatever other blame the victim bullshit they can think up. This was a scam, perpetrated by the Speaker of the House. And as long as pundits provide cover for him, he'll keep pulling these unconstitutional stunts.