Cooper comin’

by | Oct 16, 2013 | Democrats, Editor's Blog, NC Politics | 18 comments

Roy Cooper is running for governor. More importantly, though, he’s filling a void that Democrats have felt for too long. He’s providing the party faithful a champion, somebody they can rally around.

Over the past few weeks, Cooper has been moving around the state making noises and headlines. But yesterday in a Huffington Post piece, he laid out the case for Democrats while giving people a solid reason to reject Republicans. In a single move, he fired a shot across the bow of the Republican Party and defined the values of the Democratic Party.

Cooper didn’t hold back. His language was combative and his disdain for the actions of Pat McCrory and the Republican legislature was clear. Essentially, Cooper launched his campaign, three years ahead of the next election, by going on the attack. It was a smart move.

Among Democrats, you could almost hear a cheer rise up from across the state. And you could feel a collective sigh of relief. Somebody is stepping up to the plate.

Cooper also helped put to rest questions about his own drive and ambition. For years, conventional wisdom has been that Cooper was risk averse. He passed on numerous Senate races and the 2008 gubernatorial contest. I once wrote that North Carolina could tell election season was coming when the speculation started about Roy Cooper’s next move. After yesterday, nobody is speculating anymore.

Three years is a long slog. Cooper opens himself up to years of criticism and attacks. He will certainly make a misstep or two and find himself in the midst of controversies. Over such a long period, voters could get Cooper fatigue. But it’s a risk worth taking.

Campaigns are roller coasters and political environments are volatile. Between now and 2016, we will read at least one article on Cooper’s ultimate political demise and we will read others about his inevitability. In reality, we won’t know much about the dynamics of the 2016 race for at least a couple of years. But we know Cooper is running.

As of yesterday, he is the new face of the North Carolina Democratic Party. He’s providing Democrats what they desperately need–a leader. He knows what he stands for. He knows what is wrong with our state. And he knows where he wants to lead us. For now, that’s good enough for me.


  1. Marshal Walker

    I am a registered democrat but will not support Cooper because he made a statement several weeks ago that he has always approved of same sex marriage. North Carolina law does not recognize this. I think he is just trying to be “politically correct” as most politicians in our country use today hoping it will benefit them to be elected. We do not need a Governor who will not abide by North Carolina Statutes of Law.

    • Betsy Muse

      Marshall, Cooper is entitled to his opinion and I believe that was all he was expressing. I think it is pretty amazing that you have the ability to look inside someone’s mind or heart and know their intent. Until today I thought only God could do that. Now I know.

      Please link to the source that claimed Cooper would not uphold the laws of the state?

  2. Betsy Muse

    Roy Cooper spoke to two groups in Union County yesterday. To say we are fired up is an understatement. He not only spoke, but stayed after to shake every single hand before heading to Charlotte.

    The kicker is….neither event was a fundraiser.

  3. Moving NC Forward

    Roy does not even have the courage to publicly announce he is running for Governor. He does not have the courage to stand up for North Carolinians. Ken Spaulding has announced and from the buzz, the good ole boy demos are worried he just might win, Ken Spaulding is a force to be reckoned with and he is what this state needs. Way to go Ken. Roy will be too busy defending NC against the United States Justice Department. We need leadership, competence, and steady hands on the wheel. Ken 2016. Get use to it…

    • Betsy Muse

      Who is Ken Spaulding? Has he run for something in another part of the state? I think I’d recognize the name if he had run state-wide. If he’s a state legislator, the lack of name recognition is going to kill him. I typically only remember the names of state reps and state senators outside of my area who have done something notable, which I think is fairly common. I have no clue who Spaulding is.

  4. pamela furr

    It is hard to correct all of the problems our state has had after a long pull of misguided democratic guidance .. Bev about did our state in with all of her mis-steps !!! Give Pat a chance to fix it what has gone wrong .. it takes more than a few months ..people getting mad cause of things being taken away.. too many entitlements as it is …. I voted for him & I stand beside him in his choices !!!

    • troy

      You speak of fixing things. However, when the fix is worse than the problem, I fail to see the ‘fix’.

      Cutting education funding, then using tax dollars to provision vouchers for parents that choose to send their children to private school. How is that fixing something other than funding an individual choice? If you want to send your child to private school, you have that choice; and you pay for it. Not now. Oh no.

      Cutting the unemployment benefits in a state with one of the worst unemployment rates in the nation by amount and duration. A State already equipped with a low standard of living in many areas if you don’t live inside the Triangle. Refusing federal funding to provide health benefits to those that don’t have them. Who do you think pays for those non-payment visits to the Emergency rooms? We do through increased pricing.

      Doubling salaries or more to certain former staffers that are essentially unqualified to do the job they are doing, and not paying the people who actually do the work, every day, because they are that dedicated.

      And last, we have voter fraud. What voter fraud? The last case that I can remember happened in Caldwell County and revolved around a Republican candidate accused of buying votes. There was vote buying, but the case lacked evidence of the candidate’s direct involvement. No, it’s not about voter fraud, it’s about voter intimidation. About keeping people at home in order to rig elections. So with regard to the Governor stating that anyone who didn’t think it happened is naive, anyone who doesn’t see the real reason behind it is likewise naive.

      Bev wasn’t much punkin as a Governor, but at least she didn’t try to hurt people by starving them or forcing them out of their shelters. I think she meant well, she just had poor advice on how to proceed. But this guy, he’s very deliberate, calculating, and stands at odds with everything this State used to stand for as a moderate and progressive place.

      I hope you’re just as understanding with regard to time when Roy Cooper is governor and is trying to undo all that has been done to the State and the people. Like you said, it will take more than a few months to fix.

  5. Robena M

    Actually, we need people to step up to the plate and run for office and then get folks to vote in 2014. True, McCrony is in office for another 3 years, false, we can’t at least go after the republican majority.

  6. Jeff R.

    Now we hope and pray that there is something left of NC after 2 more years of McCrory.

  7. David yeomans

    Way to go Roy glad you are running for governor

  8. John T. McDevitt

    I have known Roy Cooper personally for many years, is an honorable man who has displayed sound judgement, honor and integrity during his years as the Attorney General and Chief Law Enforcement Officer in North Carolina. He has my utmost respect and support.

  9. troy

    Roy has done an excellent job as Attorney General and stayed clear of the partisan in-fighting and weakness of the Democrat party in this State that has enabled the teabaggers to take control of this with their extremist agenda ‘reforms’. If we aren’t careful, they are going to reform us back to the antebellum period; an era contemporaneous with their ideas and perspectives.

    He will be the best Governor we’ve had in North Carolina for several decades. All we have to do is survive the McCrory era to get there.

  10. Hunter

    Only with the road solidly paved by actual Democrats, NC civil disobedience making national news and GOP numbers in the tank like never before has Roy Cooper finally risen from his 30 year slumber and decided to run.

    I am thoroughly unimpressed by this non-leader excuse for a politician whose regressive record should make any Democrat ashamed to vote for him.

    • Brian Lord

      @Hunter. I find your attitude confusing. Mr. Cooper has been solidly in a position in government where he has by profession and position forced to follow the law and serve the acting Governor and State. Never before has our government been so regressive, and this man believes now is the time for him to stand up and instead of support lead. I wish more people were like him and waited until they had both knowledge and Wisdom to know when is the time to take the reigns from others. Roy Cooper has been the quiet and steady voice of reason for many years, and now he believes, as do many others, that he should stop the insanity that has permeated our congress. Mr. Cooper is not pursuing a career agenda, but rather answering a desperate call and need within our state. I for one am thankful he has made this choice, and I will support him however I can.

      • Hunter

        You would be confused if you ignored Cooper’s history in the state legislature. You do realize he hasn’t been AG forever?

        Even the post’s author acknowledges Cooper’s lack of fortitude over his career in state politics (passing on one race after another).

        It is a sad commentary on the state of the Democratic party when people feel the need to rally around someone like Roy Cooper as if he were the second coming.

        This lifelong Democrat is disgusted by mindless rallying around a career politician who finally decided to get off the sidelines about 15 years too late.

        • F.G.Carter, Jr.

          To influence me, you’ll need specifics. Generalities are easy and name-calling is juvenile. What specifically do you speak of when you address Mr. Cooper’s “history in the state legislature?”

    • Curtis Sluder

      I am betting you are NOT a democrat.

  11. nancy g. rorie

    I love Roy Cooper.

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