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Aug 8, 2014

N.C. Senator Reveals Plans to Impeach Attorney General Over Marriage Comments

Raleigh, N.C. (August 8, 2014) – Equality NC responded on Friday to comments from N.C. Senator Norm Sanderson (R – Carteret and Pamlico Counties), who said Thursday that leadership in both GOP-controlled chambers of the North Carolina legislature should work to remove the state's Attorney General Roy Cooper from office. The comments came in response to statements from Cooper last month that because of the legally-binding 4th Circuit ruling in favor of marriage equality, Amendment One, North Carolina's ban on the freedom to marry, is indefensible.

According to The Carteret County Times-News, Sen. Sanderson told attendees at a Tea Party meeting, "we need to probably impeach [Cooper] because he’s been a vocal opponent of the marriage amendment ever since it was passed."

According to The Carteret County News-Times, Mr. Sanderson addressed a local Tea Party meeting on August 7, telling attendees, "We have set aside money to hire private counsel to represent us and that’s what’s getting ready to happen. If he’s not going to defend what we, the citizens of North Carolina, want him to defend, we need to probably impeach him because he’s been a vocal opponent of the marriage amendment ever since it was passed."

Chris Sgro, executive director of Equality NC, North Carolina’s LGBT advocacy organization and the leading opponent of the state’s marriage equality ban, said today he continues to commend Attorney General Cooper for standing up for all North Carolina families by standing against what he called an "extreme fringe."

“We believe our state's leaders should join their fellow North Carolinians in seeing Mr. Sanderson's efforts for what they are – political posturing from an extreme fringe attempting to once again pit one North Carolinian against another during a contentious election year," said Sgro. "This cynical effort, alongside any defense of the now indefensible Amendment One, is a perverse waste of taxpayer dollars."

Sgro added, "Attorney General Roy Cooper put the interests of the state of North Carolina first when he said that there is no longer a valid defense for Amendment One. When he says otherwise, Senator Sanderson is not only showing he is out of touch with the people of North Carolina, but also the legal realities facing this discriminatory ban."

TAKE ACTION: Ask NC leaders to stop defending Amendment One.

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