A Message to Gov. Cooper From Brenden Jones

A Message to Gov. Cooper From Brenden Jones

Rep Brenden Jones: Gov. Cooper, please don’t abandon us

BY JUSTIN SMITH justinsmith@nrcolumbus.com

Revised on: 08.2.2019 at 02:15 p.m.

Posted on: 08.2.2019 at 02:15 p.m. |  PREMIUM CONTENT

By Rep. Brenden Jones

The governor has the audacity to proclaim that the legislature isn’t negotiating on a budget compromise. It has been more than 30 days since the veto and the governor has made clear that he does not intend on negotiating if the budget does not include Medicaid expansion. A $24 billion state budget that provides disaster relief, rural broadband funding, funding for opioid treatment, and the largest pay raise for state employees in a decade—none of that matters to Cooper unless he gets Medicaid expansion.

Where was the governor for the first six months of budget deliberations?  He was a no show.  Instead, he appears after the legislature has agreed upon a budget and subsequently attempts to sabotage the entire process by attaching Medicaid expansion to his wish list.  I have helped to secure millions of dollars in the budget for Columbus County.  The district-specific appropriations include millions for infrastructure projects, school construction, and much more.  Those funds are in jeopardy of not making it to our district because of the governor’s veto. 

Rep. Brenden Jones (R-Tabor City)

I have come to the sad realization that the governor cares more about photo-ops than doing the right thing for the State of North Carolina.  He likes to travel the state for economic announcements and promises that help is on the way, and yet my district has been waiting almost three years for disaster relief following Hurricane Matthew.  The governor conveniently avoids questions about the reports that have discovered his administration’s failures to allocate disaster monies to the folks in need.   

There was a time back in the 1990s when Cooper was a member of the state legislature and he was considered a reasonable and moderate Democrat.  Unfortunately, that person no longer exists.  In his place stands a man that has followed his party to the extreme left, more concerned with appeasing socialist sympathizers than passing a budget with bipartisan support. A reasonable negotiator would not hold the budget hostage because he refuses to debate Medicaid expansion separately.  The legislature has offered to come back for a special session to address the healthcare needs of all citizens of North Carolina, yet the governor refuses.