Thom Tillis, in an interview with the National Journal, reveals a Republican senator ready to move even further Left.
In the article, Tillis promoted some interesting takes on the recent election and North Carolina’s electorate.
Tillis described North Carolina as “barely right-of-center,” which is baffling seeing that in 2010 Republicans won both chambers of the General Assembly for the first time – ever. Moreover, the 2010 elections took place in legislative districts drawn by Democrats. Then, in 2012, Republicans added to the early win by gaining veto-proof majorities in the legislature and electing a governor and a lieutenant governor. Republicans held on to their veto-proof majorities in both chambers in 2014, and in 2016 won three additional Council of State seats as well as holding the lieutenant governor’s post, and voting for Donald Trump, giving him a nearly 4-percentage point advantage over Hillary Clinton.
The freshman senator said he sees the 2016 election for governor in North Carolina as a “cautionary tale.” It’s an interesting take on the election because some would argue that Tillis, when he was Speaker of the N.C. House, pushed the I-77 toll road project that ultimately would be one of the main reasons Pat McCrory lost his re-election bid. And the article appears to confirm rumors that Tillis blocked and or delayed conservative legislation while he was Speaker of the House. There were always rumors that he may have been the hold-up on the marriage amendment, abortion legislation and tax cuts.
“And Tillis said his role as speaker gave him experience taking on his own party—something he plans to do more of as Republicans assume total control of Washington next year. In the state House, Tillis passed an agenda that included tort reform, antiabortion measures, and a constitutional amendment to ban gay marriage—issues he said angered as many Republicans as Democrats, because his own party wanted to be even more aggressive.
“The people who would want us to go further on any one bill, they represent the single greatest threat to us making progress on the very subject matter,” said Tillis, citing examples of bills that have been vetoed or thrown out in court.”
Tillis has also threatened not to run again if he doesn’t get his way on criminal justice reform/bipartisan judicial reform:
“He made news on that topic earlier this month, suggesting he wouldn’t seek reelection in 2020 if the Senate didn’t make meaningful progress on it and other issues. He doubled down on that claim in the interview, but said he did not have his sights set on any other jobs.”
About social issues, Tillis said,
“When you wade too far into some of the more controversial social issues, then you begin to see an increasing amount of opposition.”
This just may be the heart of the matter. Tillis doesn’t want to fight for many of the pro-family issues that most North Carolinians support.