Art Pope

Infestation

Among the most damaging of all animal species in the world today, termites strike a special fear in humans. These insects are legendary in their ability to destroy from within, secretly attacking foundations until the buildings around them collapse into rubble. Such is the impact of the GOP on the foundation of government in North Carolina. Art Pope, of course, is the queen of destruction.

From a throne deep inside his multimillion dollar opinion manufacturing machine, Mr. Pope has decimated our state's economy and enriched wealthy citizens at the expense of middle class families, teachers, government workers, and the environment. No area of responsible stewardship has been left unscathed.

Yet the damage being done is not easily visible to the people in our state. The destruction is hidden behind the walls of our classrooms and beneath our bridges and highways. Having plastered over the hollowed out joists in our foundations, Mr. Pope and his minions have managed to shield their work from public view. They are hoping people won't notice until after November.

The strong house that has been North Carolina is at risk of crumbling around us, ravaged by gluttonous creatures whose only goal is to fatten their queen.

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Artracide

While North Carolina currently enjoys a AAA credit rating from Standard and Poor's, it potentially could come to this:

TOPEKA — News that the state’s credit rating had been downgraded put a damper on Gov. Sam Brownback and U.S. Sen. Pat Roberts’ Republican unity celebration Wednesday morning.

Standard & Poor’s lowered Kansas’ bond rating to AA from AA+, citing the state’s unbalanced budget caused by income tax cuts signed into law in 2012. Though the state’s bond rating is still high, the downgrade is a signal to investors that Kansas bonds are a riskier investment than they were before the tax cuts.

"The downgrades reflect our view of a structurally unbalanced budget, following state income tax cuts that have not been matched with offsetting ongoing expenditure cuts in the fiscal 2015 budget," said Standard & Poor's credit analyst David Hitchcock in a release.
S & P also downgraded the state’s appropriation-secured debt to AA- from AA.

Art Pope quits, leaves NC without a governor

You've no doubt heard the news. Art Pope is taking his $1 salary and going home. Which raises this question: what is Deputy Assistant Governor Pat McCrory going to do without Mr. Pope to tell him what to say?

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Goolsby, now Pope

are so Palinesque.

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Art Pope continues his "community service"

Southeast Raleigh has lacked a good supermarket for quite some time, since a Kroger store closed more than a year and a half ago.

Southeast Raleigh is recognized by the U.S. Department of Agriculture as a "food desert," an urban area where the poverty rate is at least 20 percent and at least 33 percent of residents have limited access to a supermarket or large grocery store. After the Kroger store closed, residents had to trek several miles – sometimes on foot, sometimes taking various buses – to get to the nearest supermarket.

Art Pope to the rescue!

Art Pope’s Variety Wholesalers has purchased the vacant Kroger store in Southeast Raleigh with plans to establish the company’s first standalone grocery in an area that badly needs one.

Cost of Art Pope's tax cut balloons to $690M

Earlier estimates put the cost of the NC GOP's tax giveaways to millionaires at nearly half a billion dollars.

Turns out those estimates were low -- we're now pushing three-quarters of a billion dollars in revenue shortfall because the NC GOP puts Art Pope's tax cut above every other policy objective.

New figures from legislative analysts confirm the 2013 cut to individual income tax rates is costing the state far more than originally projected.
...
According to a memo Thursday from legislative analyst Brian Slivka and chief economist Barry Boardman, the updated cost of the tax cut is $690 million for the current tax year.

That's $205 million, or 43 percent, higher than the original projection of $475 million.

That's for this year. And like the Energizer bunny, the NC GOP's fiscal irresponsibility just keeps going and going.

Some people still think there's no point in focusing on Art Pope

BlueNC has been on the trail of Art Pope for a decade, watching with alarm his steady rise to power and influence. Unable to win his race for lieutenant governor, he took his ball, went home, and decided to buy the government for chump change. You might argue that all the attention we've focused on Mr. Pope has been a waste of time, since he got exactly what he wanted all along. And you'd have a point.

But there's another point too. Unless and until the public is made painfully aware of undue influence, that influence will never dissipate.

Harry Reid's doing it.
The Institute for Southern Studies is doing it.
And so are we.

Tagged:

Do over! Do over!


"Wha' happened, Pat?...Art stop short?!"

In a story July 6 about state budget director Art Pope, The Associated Press erroneously attributed a quote from Pope to Gov. Pat McCrory. It was Pope, not McCrory, who said: "My job is to advise the governor and present information to him that's just not my personal advice ... and once the governor makes a decision, my job is to implement those decisions."

Correction: Capitol Letter story

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