by Becki Gray
Former Senior Vice President, John Locke Foundation
Doug Heye, in a US News and World report today, comments on Perdue’s joke and weighs in why she is the most endangered incumbent governor in the nation:
Perdue has refused to state a position on an amendment to the state constitution to outlaw same-sex marriage and civil unions, despite her involvement in moving the vote from the November elections to the May primaries.
And despite the aggressive efforts of a revitalized North Carolina Republican Party, Perdue refuses to weigh in on the National Labor Relations Board blocking Boeing Co. from shifting jobs to a nonunion plant in South Carolina, an important issue regionally and one that former North Carolina Democratic Party Chair David Young declared in the Charlotte Observer, “Yes, NLRB-Boeing Hurts N.C.”
With labor unions already riled over the 2012 Democratic National Convention being held in the right-to-work state, perhaps Perdue does not want to anger them further. But Perdue’s record on jobs may-be what most threatens hers.
Since she took office in January, 2009, unemployment in North Carolina has increased from 9.2 percent to 10.4 percent last month—a loss of more than 137,000 jobs in the state.
Voter reaction has been harsh. A High Point University poll released this week shows Governor Perdue with 37 percent approval and 46 percent disapproval—effectively wiping out the small bump she received from her response to Hurricane Irene—despite Democrats outnumbering Republicans, as of Wednesday, by 775,459 registered voters.
As the poll shows, voter dissatisfaction with President Barack Obama, who narrowly carried the Tar Heel State in 2008, is at critical mass with 53 percent of respondents disapproving of his job performance. In other words, Perdue, who doesn’t have much to run on herself, can’t depend on long coattails.
Traditionally, state elections have favored Democrats; North Carolina Republicans have not elected a governor since 1988. But with voter anger—and unemployment—mounting, unforced errors such as the constantly changing Kentucky alibi and this week’s comments only cement Perdue’s position as the most endangered incumbent governor in the nation.