NC House votes to override both McCrory vetoes

  • Posted: Wednesday, September 4, 2013 1:28 a.m.

RALEIGH (AP) — The North Carolina House voted Tuesday to cancel Gov. Pat McCrory’s first two vetoes, handing setbacks to a Republican governor who fell short in persuading enough lawmakers in a chamber generally friendly to him to come to his side.

In less than 40 minutes of debate, the House voted to override vetoes on bills that would require drug-testing for some welfare applicants and broaden an exemption for employers to avoid using the E-Verify system to check the immigration status of new workers. The 77-39 vote for the drug testing bill and the 84-32 margin on the immigration-related bill cleared the three-fifths majorities needed for overrides.

The bills now go to the Senate, where leaders intended to debate Wednesday morning and vote. Senate Rules Chairman Tom Apodaca, R-Henderson, said earlier Tuesday he didn’t see any reason why the bills would fail to pass in his chamber by veto-proof margins. If it holds true, the bills will become law.

Many House Republicans preferred not to hand defeats to McCrory, who has found in them close allies during his first eight months in office compared to Senate counterparts. But McCrory found it difficult to nudge enough GOP members from their positions. He also used Facebook to lobby some Republicans who voted originally for the vetoed bills and rolled out surrogates in recent days to try and turn the tide.

House Speaker Thom Tillis, R-Mecklenburg, said in a statement that despite the disagreement Republicans “appreciate his leadership and continue to have great confidence in his administration.”

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