Forbes Magazine is at the forefront of the economic scene in America, and they have a lot to say about this election.
They recently published their thoughts on the North Carolina gubernatorial race between incumbent Governor Pat McCrory, and his Democrat challenger, Roy Cooper.
It’s a great read, and one that every North Carolina voter needs to take to heart, so I’m going to highlight those reasons here.
They start by pointing out McCrory’s rate-reducing tax reform, and the incredible success it has had in the state – for everyone.
When Gov. McCrory was sworn in four years ago, North Carolina had the highest personal and corporate income tax rates in the Southeast. McCrory’s predecessor as governor, Bev Perdue (D), had used the previous four years to make the state’s tax climate less hospitable, piling onto the 20 federal tax hikes approved by President Obama with higher state taxes on income, sales, alcohol, and tobacco.
Gov. McCrory, working with Republican lawmakers who took over the state legislature in 2010, passed tax reform in 2013 that significantly reduced and flattened the personal and corporate income tax rates, providing a net tax cut on average for households from every income level.
Because of these reforms, North Carolina’s business tax climate has improved from 41st to 11th best in the country on the non-partisan Tax Foundation’s State Business Tax Climate Index.
Bev Perdue and the Democrats couldn’t quite get it through their skulls that when unemployment is high and the people are struggling, you don’t ease the pain by burdening them with more taxes.
Roy Cooper has promised that he will kill McCrory’s tax reforms and take us back to Perdue-era taxation.
Democrats are incapable of learning.
Reason number two for a McCrory victory is the cancellation of federal debt.
Gov. McCrory & Republican lawmakers have kept spending in check at the same time that they provided relief to taxpayers. They have kept increases in state spending below the rate of growth in population and inflation, which is a fiscal recipe for success ensuring that the economy grows faster than government. Another smart spending move Gov. McCrory made was to exit the federal government’s extended benefits program for unemployment insurance in the Summer of 2013.
In addition to allowing the state to retire a $2 billion debt to the federal government, Gov. McCrory’s move to end long-term unemployment benefits ahead of other states provided further evidence (and a teachable moment for Congress) that extended unemployment benefits serve to deter the taking and formation of jobs, as noted in this space at the time:
“Since ending long-term unemployment benefits, the rate of job growth in North Carolina has seen a marked uptick and the unemployment rate has gone down at a much faster rate than the nation as a whole. The state’s unemployment rate dropped from 8.1 percent in July of 2013, the month extended federal unemployment benefits ended in North Carolina, to 6.4 percent in February of this year. This 20 percent reduction in the state’s unemployment rate is well over double the eight percent drop in unemployment that occurred nationally during that time.”
I’ve actually had to break it down to some friends this way: You don’t need longer unemployment benefits if you have jobs to go to.
Third in the list of awesome that is Governor McCrory’s leadership is the regulatory reforms enacted, making North Carolina an attractive option for investment and job creation.
Over the past four years, Gov. McCrory, working with Senate President Phil Berger & Speaker Tim Moore (and then-Speaker Thom Tillis before he was elected to the U.S. Senate in 2014) have passed legislation to decrease the total number of rules in the state’s administrative code by 2,540. The goal for Gov. McCrory & state legislators is to get down to 19,000 total rules, which would be slightly below the number of rules North Carolina had on the books when the state officially began keeping track in 1994.
Fourth is the expansion of school choice in the Tar Heel state. That’s all McCrory.
Because the modern Democratic Party is dependent on teachers union financial support and election manpower, Roy Cooper, like Hillary Clinton, has to oppose efforts to expand school choice, even though doing so keeps predominantly poor and minority kids trapped in dropout factories.
That’s a powerful statement, and one that minority parents would be wise to take note of, as they go to the polls today.
“In 2013, Gov. McCrory approved legislation creating the Opportunity Scholarship and Disability Grant programs. These programs provide private school vouchers to special-needs students and those from low-income households. These programs, which were vehemently opposed by Democrats and progressive groups, have enabled thousands of North Carolina children to escape failing schools and have the opportunity to receive a better education.
Parents across North Carolina are taking advantage of the increased choice provided by these programs. Next year, more than 6,000 children from low-income households will get an opportunity scholarship and Gov. McCrory approved additional funding for the program that will permit thousands more to receive a $4,200 voucher to attend the school of their choice in the coming decade. As of this year, more than 800 special-needs students receive a scholarship through the Disability Grant Program to attend schools that better serve their needs.”
The fifth and final reason listed in Forbes is this:
5) Gov. McCrory’s Reelection Will Ensure North Carolina Remains A National Leader In Free Market Policy Innovation
While polls show the McCrory-Cooper race could go either way, it is a near certainty that Republicans will remain in control of both chambers of the state legislature heading into 2017.
Though a GOP-controlled legislature would prevent Roy Cooper from doing as much damage as Bev Perdue did as governor working with a Democrat-controlled General Assembly, the reelection of Gov. McCrory will ensure North Carolina can remain on offense when it comes to enacting policy reforms that promote free enterprise and economic growth.
We have a chance to show the nation that commonsense is not dead in this nation.
McCrory is the canary in the mineshaft, right now. What happens in this race may very well determine the economic future of this nation, as well as the future of the conservative movement.
Get it right, North Carolina.