In a surprising move, State Rep. Tricia Cotham, a Democrat from Charlotte, has announced that she is switching to the Republican Party. Cotham won her seat in a district that voted for Biden by 23 points, making her move to the GOP even more unexpected.
With Cotham’s switch, Republicans now have a veto-proof majority over Democrat Gov. Roy Cooper, which could have significant implications for the state’s political landscape.
The Fallout from Cotham’s Switch
Cooper has been using his veto power to block the Republicans’ agenda, and Cotham’s decision to switch parties gives the Republicans the power to override Cooper’s vetoes. The move comes after Cotham skipped a vote to override Cooper’s veto of a GOP gun law, which allowed the bill to pass. Her Democrat colleagues were outraged by the move, and now they have no power in a crucial swing state.
Cotham’s Decision and Its Impact
While Cotham’s decision to switch parties is a significant blow to the Democrats, it is unclear how she plans to align herself with the GOP. She could officially switch her party affiliation to Republican, or she could remain a Democrat on paper but sit and vote with Republicans in the legislature. Regardless of how she decides to align herself, Democrats have made it clear that she is no longer one of them.
Cotham’s switch to the Republican Party is the biggest political bombshell at the state legislature in recent years. Others have switched parties, but not since a bribery scandal 20 years ago, which briefly resulted in an evenly tied House of Representatives and eventually led to a top Democrat being sent to prison.
What This Means for North Carolina
Cotham’s switch to the Republican Party has significant implications for North Carolina’s political landscape. With a veto-proof majority, Republicans can push through legislation without any input from the Democrats. This could have serious consequences for issues such as women’s reproductive freedom, election laws, LGBTQ rights, and public schools.
The fallout from Cotham’s switch is still being felt, and it remains to be seen how she plans to align herself with the GOP. However, one thing is clear: North Carolina’s political landscape has undergone a seismic shift, and it will be interesting to see how this plays out in the coming months and years.
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