In what’s become known as “Moral Mondays,” a growing number of demonstrators have gathered at North Carolina’s legislative building to show their opposition to policies advanced by the Republican-controlled legislature. Since April 29th, nearly 500 demonstrators have been arrested. But that hasn’t put a stop to the demonstrations.
North Carolina is one of 24 states in which both legislative houses as well as the governorship are under GOP control.
In April, Rev. William Barber, the head of North Carolina’s NAACP, rallied a group of North Carolinians and other supporters who are dissatisfied with a slew of policies advanced by the state’s Republican lawmakers. These include the failure of the state GOP to engage in Medicaid expansion, efforts to put restrictive voting measures in place, and education spending policies that divert money from public schools to private schools. Barber describes the Republican approach to these issues as an “avalanche of extremist policies that threaten health care, education, voting rights. These folks are bringing something strange tainted with racism and classism.”
Opponents of the demonstrations, including North Carolina Governor Pat McCrory, have characterized the protesters as “outsiders.” However, warrants from the arrest show that 98% of the nearly 500 people arrested thus far are residents of North Carolina.
On Hardball today, we zeroed in on a key issue for proponents of “Moral Monday”: voter restrictions. Despite the backlash these measures drew during the last election cycle, North Carolina lawmakers have continued to advance initiatives that limit same-day voter registration, require specific forms of voter ID at the polls, and cut the number of days available for early voting. Check out the video above with our guests, Judith Browne Dianis of the Advancement Project and Timothy Tyson, a Duke University professor of divinity and ‘Moral Monday’ protester.