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North Carolina Gubernatorial Candidate Wants Trans Women Arrested

Lt. Gov. Mark Robinson (R-NC) is doing his best to make sure North Carolina has 16 consecutive years of Democratic governors. The current two-term governor, Roy Cooper (D-NC), is a Democrat and Robinson seems to be trying to help North Carolina AG Josh Stein (D) succeed him. Robinson is the leading candidate for the Republican nomination to face Stein in November and insists upon saying things that will help ensure that Stein beats him in November.

At a campaign stop in Cary, NC, Robinson recently said: "We're going to defend women in this state. That means if you're a man on Friday night and all of a sudden on Saturday, you feel like a woman and you want to go in the women's bathroom in the mall, you will be arrested—or whatever we got to do to you." He didn't elaborate on the "whatever we got to do to you" part, but it sounds ominous.

All we can say is that this guy isn't very good at paying attention. In March 2016, then-North Carolina governor Pat McCrory (R) signed the infamous "bathroom bill" that required people using sex-segregated public restrooms to use the one corresponding to the sex on their birth certificate. The law sparked massive protests, with entertainers canceling shows, businesses planning to move to North Carolina canceling plans, and sports leagues moving championship games out of the state. McCrory's approval rating dropped 15 points and he lost his reelection campaign to Cooper.

If Robinson has half a brain, he ought to know that "who uses which bathroom" is not a winning issue in North Carolina. It got a sitting Republican governor in a red state, who was first elected by 13 points, defeated for reelection. That's not easy to do. The issue has a proven track record of not working in North Carolina, so you would think Robinson would be smart enough not to touch it with a 10-foot pole, but no. He wants to arrest people using the wrong bathroom. He didn't get into the details, though. For example, will people using a public restroom be required to carry a copy of their birth certificate with them and undergo an inspection by the bathroom police upon entry, or will there be random checks from time to time? If someone does not have a birth certificate with them, will they be refused entry? How much will it cost to have a new division of the state police dedicated to enforcing bathroom laws?

This is not the first time Robinson, who is Black, has said controversial things, but this is clearly the dumbest of all given how this issue cost a previous Republican governor his job. Robinson previously said: "This foolishness about Hitler disarming MILLIONS of Jews and then marching them off to concentration camps is a bunch of hogwash." That didn't go over big with Jews. He also said that Christians are called to be led by men. That didn't go over so well with women. The time Robinson visited a Black church and gave a sermon calling homosexuality "filth" didn't go over so well with gay people. We are waiting for him to attack Blacks, Latinos, and Asian Americans. November is nine months away, so there is still time.

Robinson has two opponents in the GOP primary. One is the state treasurer, Dale Folwell, and the other is an attorney and previously failed gubernatorial candidate, Bill Graham. The most recent poll has Robinson at 34%, Graham at 9% and Folwell at 4%. However, 53% are undecided or not paying attention, so it is not a done deal yet. (V)

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