"Morgan's Foes Seek His Ouster From Committee"

To the Editors,


Rep. Richard Morgan claims that his Republican opponents (the
55 Republicans who backed Republican Caucus nominees Daughtry
and Holmes) had offered Democrat Jim Black sole control of the
House speakership.  They "would have given the Republican gavel
away and settled for speaker pro tem," Morgan told _The Pilot_
("Morgan's Foes Seek His Ouster From Committee", 2/20/2004).

That is an obvious lie.

The other Republicans say that what they actually offered the
Democrats was an equal sharing of power between Republicans and
Democrats.  But Morgan "outbid" the main Republican faction by
making Black a better offer.

There are two reasons why it is obvious that what Rep. Morgan
told _The Pilot_ is a lie:

1.  Morgan was not privy to the negotiation between the other
Republican faction and the Democrats.  Whatever he says he
knows about it is just speculation or hearsay.

2.  If Democrat leader Black had an offer for sole control,
he'd have taken it, obviously.  He is not an idiot!

When the main Republican faction asked Rep. Black to agree
to an equal sharing of power, Black turned them down, because
he already had a better offer.

What Morgan offered to Black is now known, for the most part,
because that is the deal which the Democrats accepted.  In
order to get the gavel every other day, Morgan sold out his
fellow Republicans and put the Democrats firmly in control.

   [The rest of the letter wasn't printed, because it exceeded 300 words:]

Morgan's deal with the Democrats had 3 main points:

   1. Black and Morgan would be co-speakers, and preside on
alternate days.

   2. The co-speakers would each have "veto power" over any
bill that they deemed controversial (except, apparently, for
the lottery, which they seemed ready to bring up if lottery
supporters could have found the votes to pass it).  Also,
the co-speakers apparently agreed to cover for each other, and
not blame or embarrass each other for such "vetos."

   3. Democrat Rep. Wm. Culpepper would be sole chairman of the
most powerful committee in the House, the Rules Committee, and
he would control the "calendar" that determine which bills are
voted upon, and when.

The last 2 points are big concessions to the Democrats.

Point 3 is the most obviously unfair to Republicans, since it
puts all bills at the mercy of Democrat Rep. Bill Culpepper.

But point 2, the "mutual, anonymous veto" provision, is really
just as bad for Republicans.  Point 2 sounds even-handed, but
it isn't.  That's because in the 2002 election Republicans made
big gains, so under normal circumstances you would expect that
Republicans would be on the offensive, trying to enact their
reforms, and Democrats would be on the defensive.  So
Democrats, naturally, have a lot more use for their "veto" than
Republicans do.

The Democrats have used their veto to devastating effect.  The
most cherished Republican initiatives have all been killed by
the House leadership, mostly in the Democrat-controlled Rules

Point 1, the co-speakership, also sounds even-handed.  It would
be, if Richard Morgan were a loyal Republican.  But he's not.

For all intents and purposes, Rep. Morgan is now a Democrat.
He proved it during the special redistricting session.  On
November 25 Richard Morgan sealed his defection to the
Democrats.  That was the day he presided over the House and
personally rammed through the Democrats' gerrymander of the
NC Senate.

Every Republican Senator had voted against the Democrats'
redistricting plan, because it is so unfair to Republicans.
The State Republican Party publicly condemned it as an
unconstitutional Democrat gerrymander.

The House Republicans could have blocked it, but Richard Morgan
defected to the Democrats and rammed it through.

That's why Republicans consider Rep. Richard Morgan a traitor.


-Dave Burton
"Trustworthy, Independent News and Views for Moore County Republicans"
W.Tel: 1-919-481-0149   H.Tel: 1-919-481-0098   C.Tel: 1-919-244-3316
109 Black Bear Ct, Cary, NC 27519-4157 USA

P.S. -- Please include my title and website (when you print
the letter), since that is my connection to Moore County
(I live outside the County).

P.P.S. -- Several House Republicans have personally confirmed
to me that the main Republican faction did NOT offer to let
Rep. Black be sole speaker.  But, to make sure, yesterday I
called Rep. Leo Daughtry, and asked him.  He told me that
he offered Black only an equal sharing of power, because he
was negotiating for the Republican Caucus, and that was all
they had authorized him to offer.

He also told me that Reps. Holmes and McMahan were present
at that conversation, and can verify what he said.  So it
isn't just Morgan's word against Daughtry's.  I haven't
been able to reach Rep. Holmes yet, but I called Rep. McMahan,
and he confirmed what Rep. Daughtry had told me.
[Reps. Holmes and McMahan also subsequently called me back, and both also
confirmed it. Also, Democrat Wm. Culpepper subsequently was quoted in a news story
in which he also confirmed to the journalist that the Democrats had taken the best deal.]

If you'd like to verify that, you may call them.  Daughtry's
home and office phone numbers are listed in the Smithfield
phone book (he is "N. Leo Daughtry, Attorney"):
His office number is also on the NC General Assembly web site: