After in-depth interviews and articles about Pat McCrory by Taylor Batten, editorial page editor of the Charlotte Observer, and John Frank, a reporter for the N&O, we’re finally getting a full picture of who Governor Pat McCrory really is. We thought we were getting a moderate, competent administrator. Boy, were we wrong.
Batten’s devastating op-ed portrays a man obsessed with his image and blaming the media for all of his bad press. Frank reveals a guy who thinks he sounds folksy and genuine because he ignores talking points and talks off the cuff. And from interviews like the one on WFAE last week, we see a guy who plays loose with the facts either because he doesn’t have a firm grasp of them or because he doesn’t realize that other people do. Hence, he keeps making stuff up.
What we have is a governor whose own self image conflicts badly with those who are observing him and he’s mad because we can’t see what he sees in himself. McCrory lacks any objectively and either refuses to listen to those who do or surrounds himself with yes men and women. Regardless of the reason, he makes the same mistakes over and over again.
Contrary to what a lot of people want to believe, he’s not a raging conservative. But he’s not a moderate, either. He’s not anything. He’s what he thinks will sound good. Unfortunately, he’s got a very poor political barometer and little sense of the state as a whole. It’s the downside of his lack of experience in state government. So he’s based his perception on the opinions of the ideologues and hacks surrounding him who drove the state hard to the right.
And his administration? It’s doing just fine, if we could get past all of the bias and see the brilliance of Aldona Wos. He sees a battered public servant. A lot of us see an entitled, bullying ideologue. Those campaign hacks getting high paying jobs that they weren’t qualified to do? They weren’t cronies, that’s just the media’s interpretation.
But in McCrory’s mind, that’s all fixable if he can just get people to like him. In that context, that PAC, the Renew North Carolina Foundation, is his salvation. They run flattering 30 second ads where he sounds confident and competent and, eventually, people will come around to his point of view. Bless his heart.
Thomas Mills is the founder and publisher of PoliticsNC.com. Before beginning PoliticsNC, Thomas spent twenty years as a political and public affairs consultant. Learn more >