The Republican Party party in North Carolina has effectively nullified the state’s Democratic governor, and they did it by beating the Dems at their own game.
It was a huge national news story when Tricia Cotham, a former Democratic lawmaker, announced she was switching parties to give the GOP-led legislator a supermajority.
What has the left so mad is that the state’s top two Republicans urged her to run.
Cotham, a well-known Democrat from a well-known family inside the party, won her district outside of Charlotte by 18 percentage points.
Three months after winning, Cotham switched parties and then on May 3, voted to override a 12-week abortion limit bill vetoed by the state’s Democrat governor.
Cotham grew up in the Democratic party.
Pat Coth, her mother, served elected office as a Democrat, telling the New York Times many in the party “have known her since she was a child.”
Cotham held several elected and volunteer positions in North Carolina as a Democrat, and after the Democrat-led legislator redrew the House districts lines in 2019, she decided to run.
Some Democrats welcomed her, but others were worried because of her opposition to 2020 public health policies.
Cotham become upset when leftist organizations endorsed her primary opponent and saw it as a betrayal from her years of service.
From the New York Times:
Ms. Cotham seemed to have embraced a me-versus-them mentality, said Jonathan Coby, her former campaign consultant. “She would say, ‘Oh, I don’t want to talk to that group, they’re out to get me; they don’t like me,’” Mr. Coby recalled.
Ms. Cotham grew leery of activists and groups on the left.
It’s pretty clear she didn’t like the groupthink and the way she was being treated, so she started talking with Republicans who, despite her views, always respected her.
More from the Times:
Ms. Cotham told Mr. Coby and her mother that she was put off that Democrats treated her as a newcomer when she returned to the House, inviting her to freshman orientation and offering her a mentor. She declined both.
Ms. Cotham would later say she was offended by what she regarded as bullying and groupthink inside the Democratic caucus, which was no longer the “big tent” she had once known. She said the caucus focused too much on process over the hard work of governance.
Democrats said they were baffled by the accusations she later aired. Text messages between Ms. Cotham and house Democratic Party leader Robert Reives reviewed by The Times show friendly dialogue.
“It never would have crossed my mind that she was having issues,” said Mr. Reives.
After she took heat from Democrats for skipping a vote over gun restrictions, she decided she had enough and decided to switch parties.
Both leaders of the GOP said they had no idea Cotham was going to switch parties when they encouraged her to run.
“The party wants to villainize anyone who has free thought,” she said during a new conference covering her switch.
What has Dems so upset is best put into words by Democrat Pricey Harrison a state representative from Greensboro.
“This switch has been absolutely devastating,” he said.
There are several things that Cotham’s switch has done that have Democrats fuming.
First, with her vote, the Democrat Governor is pretty much a lame duck any bill he vetoes gets overridden. Second, she has undone all the work Obama did to turn that state as purple as possible.
The Times initially tried to claim this was a cabal organized by the GOP, but if you actually read the piece, it’s pretty clear what happened.
The DNC treated Cotham poorly, and she decided to bounce and make them pay.