Cooper says he’s willing to work with Republicans in General Assembly

RALEIGH, N.C. (WNCN) – It’s no secret there’s been a rift between Republican leaders at the General Assembly and Democratic Gov. Roy Cooper.

But Thursday, Cooper said he is willing and wants to work with the General Assembly.

He spoke before the North Carolina Association of County Commissioners where he said he believes there can be significant consensus.

“I know that we probably have never been more divided in a partisan political way,” Cooper said.

The governor said North Carolinians are crying out for leaders who will put aside partisan politics and will work together.

Rep. Craig Horn (R-Union) agrees.

“We need to come together. I believe we can. We need to get over this rhetoric, this finger pointing and a little bit of bomb throwing,” Horn said.

Some of the issues that have state lawmakers divided are Medicaid expansion and House Bill 2.

Cooper spoke about HB2 Thursday before the state Association of County Commissioners.

“We also need to get rid of House Bill 2 and you all at the local level need to be making those decisions about whether you want to put in place discrimination ordinances. The state doesn’t need to be doing it,” Cooper said.

Horn said the state needs consistency.

“I’m a big believer in local government. But I’m also a businessman that knows that I need some consistency across the state so that every place I go doesn’t have a different rule,” Horn said.

Also Thursday, Cooper announced two more appointments to his cabinet.

Machelle Sanders, who led pharmaceutical company Biogen, was appointed to head the Department of Administration.

Also, Tony Copeland was named secretary of commerce.

He’s a former deputy secretary for commerce.

Under a new state law, Cooper’s cabinet nominees must be approved by the state senate.

Cooper is contesting the constitutionality of that.

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