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Friday, March 10, 2017

He may have just proved himself a paper tiger, but NC Senator Dan Bishop remains a hater to the tips of his toenails. He will go places in Raleigh.


NC State Senator Dan Bishop, who drafted HB2 at the direction of the North Carolina Values Coalition and the State Chamber of Congress, then rode a campaign based on bigotry to the upper chamber in Raleigh, added a new honorific in January: authoritarian. 

Here's the back story of how Bishop, still a little unsettled on one of Senate President Phil Berger's very short leashes, got up on his hind legs to repeal free speech (emphases added):
After a video was posted on Facebook Friday showing a group of people following McCrory during a trip to Washington, D.C., for inaugural weekend, chanting “Shame!” and calling him a bigot, Sen. Dan Bishop of Charlotte says he’ll introduce legislation to protect public officials. 
The proposed legislation would “make it a crime to threaten, intimidate, or retaliate against a present or former North Carolina official in the course of, or on account of, the performance of his or her duties,” Bishop said. 
“Because lines are being crossed,” Bishop, a Republican who represents the 39th District in the North Carolina Senate, wrote in an email from his Senate campaign account... 
Bishop calls the group of people of indeterminate number “a chanting mob” and “ubiquitous leftist rioters” and wonders whether the “mob fell upon the former governor by coincidence or if they stalked him.”  
Bishop said such behavior should come with a five-year prison sentence and said he’ll introduce the legislation to make it so in North Carolina, similar to an ordinance in the District of Columbia. 
“So should it be in North Carolina,” he wrote. “This is dangerous. Jim Hunt, Bev Purdue and other governors never faced riotous mobs in their post-service, private lives, without personal security.” 
Bishop said he also will urge his fellow legislators “to take other appropriate steps to guarantee the personal safety of Gov. McCrory by all means necessary.” 
Bishop said in an email to The News & Observer on Monday that he provided the District of Columbia statute to staff and asked for recommendations for a “North Carolina version” of the law. He said he also asked for research on practices of other states. 
The Washington, D.C. law Bishop cites is D.C. Code § 22-851 (anyone who "by any threatening letter or communication, intimidates, . . . or retaliates against, or attempts to intimidate . . . or retaliate against" a current or former official "on account of the performance of [his or her] duties.") 
Apparently unsatisfied by the prospect of imprisoning those who displease him, Bishop also called for action by new US Attorney General Jefferson Beauregard Sessions III, who needs no prompting when it comes to suppressing dissent and keeping people in their places:
“I hope Attorney General (Josh) Stein is looking into whether any federal statutes have been violated in this instance,” Bishop wrote, referencing McCrory’s Washington, D.C. incident. “I’m sure a referral from him to appropriate federal authorities would be very influential.” 
The video was posted by Facebook user Udai Basavaraj on Friday about 4 p.m., four hours after Donald J. Trump’s inauguration, and is tagged at the Capital Hilton in Washington. 
In the video, which lasts three and a half minutes, McCrory, television personality and conservative pundit Lou Dobbs and three unidentified women are approached by people on the street who shout “Shame!” and call McCrory an “anti-gay bigot.” McCrory and his group try to avoid them but are followed down an alley where they waited to be admitted to a building. 
None of the people who were shouting physically engaged with anyone in McCrory’s group in the video. No one is heard making any threats. Many of them are shown taking video of the incident on mobile phones.
Well, two months have gone by, and now Bishop has added another honorific: blowhard and bully. He finally dropped his big swingin' bill yesterday.

SB 229 doesn't send anyone to prison, not even to jail for calling Pat McCrory a bigot.

It pulls two State Troopers away from real work for the state and parks them at the Governor's Office, running errands while waiting for a call from Pat McCrory between passage and a year from then. Other egos to be stroked- in existing law amended by Bishop's bill- include court officials unto the least deputy clerk; Council of State members, legislators, and- delightfully- the Speaker of the House but not the pudgy bully who yanks the Speaker's choke chain, Senate president pro tem Phil Berger (Bishop should get some time in the dog house for that breach of brown-nosery).

Former governors- dramatically cited by Bishop- are left to their own devices. So is Lou Dobbs.

Bishop, who got really riled by Charlotte's LGBT rights ordinance requiring out of state visitors and entities doing business there to comply, had no trouble- back in January, reaching hundreds of miles to collar protesters and drag them to Raleigh for a five-year term at Central Prison. Now he's dropped that bit of blowhardery, too.

Bishop will do well as a senator. He knows the difference between what you say to get elected, and what you do afterward, is called an auction, and depends on the willingness of lobbyists and politicovangelicals to drop off bags of cash.

And truth remains a defense to calling Dan Bishop a bigot.

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