to defend marriage discrimination in North Carolina. What a sad way to start the year, Roy. PS Take me off your fundraising list. James's blog Comments and to think we raised money for him early on! got this one wrong! We need to be more discriminating That's a big lesson I've learned ... not to hold my nose and help someone get elected just because there's a D after the name. Unless the person is absolutely essential to abortion rights. That has become pretty much my litmus test ... my only litmus test. I'd vote for Cooper against an extremist Republican, but I wouldn't contribute a penny to his campaign. We're going to put our money on progressives or "essentials" this time around. The crime here was the awful reporting on the topic First, Roy Cooper's failure to publicly denounce the attempts by the Obama administration and most state AGs to whitewash the foreclosure crimes by banks (unlike the NY AG and a few others)... well that's why I'm not VOTING for him again -- no matter his opponent. If they can take your vote for granted, then they still have no incentive to change. Getting back to the topic at hand, the N&O writers did nothing to explain the lawsuit and simply reprinted the bigots' lie about the lawsuit. The pro-amendment group painted the lawsuit as an attempt to have the courts create a new definition of marriage ahead of the May referendum. There are actually people in this lawsuit suing the state who are a part of organizations that do NOT perform same-sex marriages. Once again the mainstream media fails to do any research and "reports" an error of omission. If the State is sued It is the statutory obligation of the Attorney General's Office to defend the lawsuit. Would you rather have Koch brother sponsored lawyers being paid by the taxpayers to represent the Statet as is being done in some states? I'd rather have the Attorney General's office handle these matters. I'd rather have a strong statement that the Attorney General believes the law is an unconstitutional infringement on the fundamental promise of equality. I'd rather have an Attorney General who would resign on principle in the face of such obviously discriminatory legislation. So would the Republicans They would like to have a conservative AG that would abuse his platform and I'd like to make sure they don't get a chance. Also, it doesn't make much sense for him to resign since Perdue would appoint another Dem who is tasked with defending the state. Are you going to expect that AG to resign in protest as well? Think of it this way. Roy Cooper is going to do his job and defend the state against the law suit, but unlike some conservative ideologue, he isn't going to introduce bull shit, made-up "evidence" provided by the John Locke Foundation. We may not like the final outcome, but I'd much rather go up against Roy Cooper than some Art Pope/Koch Brothers puppet who will use the law suit to spread "facts" manufactured to suit his/her ideology. *************************** Vote Democratic! The ass you save may be your own. When I read that post at the N&O I saw right wing groups trying to call Roy out. JayBlair is correct. It is Cooper's job to defend the state regardless of his personal beliefs. He would be a very poor lawyer ( and thus a very poor AG) if he abused his platform. Don't give him money. Don't volunteer for him. But for heaven's sake vote to keep a Democrat in the office. In my lifetime, the NC Legislature has been chock full of moderate and conservative Democrats and we still seemed to avoid the marriage amendment fight. I'd like to see an end to the progressive purity tests. From where I sit they didn't work all that great in 2010. *************************** Vote Democratic! The ass you save may be your own. Cause and effect Purity tests have had no relevance in North Carolina, unless you consider individuals using such tests to guide their campaign contributions. That's certainly how I decide how to contribute. To my way of thinking, the reason the marriage amendment wasn't passed years ago is because of Joe Hackney. True, he was speaker because Dems had a majority (included plenty of conservaDems and moderates), but those days are gone - and they are not gone because progressives didn't turn out in 2010. Said another way, Art Pope's coup in 2010 didn't have anything to do with progressives pushing hard for progressive candidates. It had much more to do with (1) Citizens United and (2) Democrats failing to inspire voters. Didn't we see conservative Democrats all over the state losing to Tea Party Republicans? Just look at Bob Etheridge. Democrats were outspent, outgunned, out-maneuvered across the board ... but it wasn't because they were held to any ideological purity tests. It's because they couldn't inspire enough people to get out and vote for them. That said, you're right I was out of line. Cooper shouldn't resign. He's definitely the least of many other evils. I Read The N&O article the same as BetsyMuse. The letter was a set up. Either the AG's office says something that could disqualify them from representing the State allowing radical right attorneys to take over the case or the AG's office states it will continue to do its job in which case progressives stop supporting an elected official who has supported progressive policies as a legislator and through proactive legal actions as Attorney General. A win win for conservatives. And it appears to have worked. Some commenters to the N&O article don't think the AG will vigorously defend the lawsuit. And posts here say they won't support the AG for doing his job. Nice. Roy Cooper is no progressive -- and hasn't been for 30 years Since you're bringing up his history as a legislator, let's remind everyone that early in Roy Cooper's legislative career he teamed up with NC House Republicans to elect Joe Maveretic as Speaker and proceed to run the state into fiscal ruin which took then-Rep. now-Senator Dan Blue two terms to fix. Seeing someone defending Roy Cooper as if he were a progressive is as far through the looking glass as one need go to disengage from honest discussion with said defender. lawsuit This lawsuit claims that it is unconstitutional for the state to recognize any kind of marriage or to require a marriage license. This may be one way to pave the way for same sex marriages by having the state not recognize the institution of marriage at all. However, its not a smart way to proceed and it could call into question numerous domestic, estate and property laws that have been in existence for decades and even centuries. Of course the AG will defend laws passed by the legislature whether he likes them or not. That's one of the duties of the office. If the AG could pick and choose what laws to defend when the state is sued, then taxpayers would be paying a lot of money for private lawyers defending the state saying God knows what on behalf of the state. How very sad for you it could call into question numerous domestic, estate and property laws that have been in existence for decades and even centuries. Welcome to my world. There has been an uneasy peace in NC for the past seven years. Firing the shot of Amendment One means that peace is broken. I welcome the lawsuit and its laying bare the Taliban-esque NC statutes that have religious officials acting as officers of the state. Wrong: Cooper doesn't have to defend unconstitutional laws This lawsuit is challenging the constitutionality under the NC Constitution of an NC statute. It is completely possible -- and indeed a part of the Attorney General's legal duty -- for the NC AG's office to agree with all or part of the lawsuit if he deems (part of) the lawsuit of merit. And regarding this? Hell no. But for heaven's sake vote to keep a Democrat in the office. From where I sit, voting for lesser evilism for the past 30 years hasn't worked out that well. Then don't vote and we can continue to relive 2010 at the polls Up to you *************************** Vote Democratic! The ass you save may be your own. I might of had a different civics teacher But, my understanding is that the Attorney General represents the State in legal matters. That a lawfully enacted statute is presumed to be constitutional. That the Judicial Branch interprets whether a statute is constitutional. I do not know any basis for an Attorney General to substitute her view of constitutional interpretation for the judicial branch. I understand that Ed Gellespie believes AGs should invalidate state laws on constitutional grounds. I believe only the Attorney General of Virginia has taken that position. Not sure that is a role model we want followed in this state. I just scoured the NC Constitution and the AG's website. From all I can tell, there are a boatload of "may's" and absolutely no "must's." Perhaps the AG has much more discretion in this matter than has been suggested in this thread. I'm sure this is something about which many lawyers will disagree, but check it out for yourself. Search the Constitution for Attorney General. No "must's" anywhere. Search the AG's website. Lots of "may's" all over the place. Looks to me like it's a debatable question, which means it is a political question. constitution Okay so james has scanned the website and the north carolina constitution and determined that the attorney general has discretion on whether to defend lawsuits against the state.. let's say he's right ( Even though the statutes clearly require the attorney general to do so)..who defends the state in the lawsuit? Private attorneys paid by the tax payers.. And by the way do you really think any court in the land is going to say that the state can not require a marriage license because it is unconstitutional? I am opposed to the constitutional amendment banning gay marriage but I don't think state recognition of marriage should be outlawed. Show me the statute I can't find it. North Carolina General Statutes 114-2 "It shall be the duty of the Attorney General: . . . To appear for the State in any . . . court or tribunal in any cause or matter, civil or criminal, in which the State may be a party or interested." Also 114-1 which was interpreted by the NC Supreme Court to include "the duty to appear for and to defend the State or its agencies in all actions in which the State may be a party".