Pat McCrory is in serious trouble because he is no longer taken seriously. After a year of breaking campaign promises, making stuff up, blaming other people and shirking responsibilities, the media no longer believes what he says or takes him at his word. His reset button is not resetting.

Earlier this week at a retreat for legislators, McCrory praised former governor Jim Hunt by calling him a “mentor” and “adviser.” Today, the N&O responded by mocking him. Yesterday, Gary Pearce, Hunt’s long-time political adviser and friend, in a somewhat tongue-in-cheek blog post called on the former governor to reject “this slander,” saying, “You don’t want people thinking McCrory has been taking your advice.”

Poor Pat. He can’t even give somebody a compliment without getting slammed. It’s because nobody believes what McCrory says anymore. An insincere compliment is no compliment at all. It’s just a bunch of words.

McCrory has developed a reputation for saying anything, true or not, if he thinks it sounds good. To regain respect and trust, McCrory needs to show some action. If Jim Hunt is really a mentor and trusted adviser, McCrory needs to take his advice. As Pearce pointed out, he should sign the petition backing Hunt’s plan to raise teacher pay to the national average in five years. And then he should make that his top legislative priority. That would be a start to regaining his credibility.

Anything less from the governor will just prove what everybody already thinks. McCrory didn’t really mean anything he said. He just thought it sounded nice. And, in McCrory world, it’s what you say, not what you do. Unfortunately for him, most of us still believe the old saying, “Actions speak louder than words.”

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