So it is done.
The North Carolina House voted 70-48 to approve of the measure, HB142, to repeal HB2.
It now heads to Roy Cooper’s office, to get his final signature on a bill that hits “reset” on a year of controversy around bathroom access in the Tar Heel state.
House Bill 142, which initially dealt with occupational licensing boards, was gutted and replaced with language repealing House Bill 2 entirely and stating that only the General Assembly can regulate access to multiple-occupancy bathrooms, locker rooms and changing facilities. It also prohibits local governments from enacting or amending ordinances regulating private employment practices or public accommodations until Dec. 1, 2020.
There were protests on both sides, regarding HB142, with LGBT activists feeling it doesn’t go far enough to allow them to determine how much of their lifestyle they get to force on others, and values advocates protesting what they see as a slippery slope to something more insidious and far-reaching.
Tami Fitzgerald, executive director of the North Carolina Values Coalition, which pushed for House Bill 2’s passage, lamented the repeal, saying business and the NCAA unfairly put the General Assembly “under a full-court press.”
“The truth remains, no basketball game, corporation or entertainment event is worth even one little girl losing her privacy and dignity to a boy in the locker room, or being harmed or frightened in a bathroom,” Fitzgerald said in a statement. “I hope that our state will learn from this and stand stronger in the future against the bullying and intimidation tactics of groups like the NCAA, the NBA and billion-dollar corporations who care more about their political, hypocritical agendas than the well-being and dignity of the people in our great state.”
The governor expressed support for the compromise bill, so he is expected to sign it, once it crosses his desk.
I can’t see Droopy Cooper missing a chance to take a victory lap for the cameras, so stand by.