Judges temporarily block North Carolina law limiting governor’s powers

Gov. Roy Cooper on Jan. 16, 2017.

RALEIGH, N.C. (AP) — A North Carolina court has temporarily blocked a state law passed by the GOP-controlled legislature that strips the Democratic governor of his some of his powers.

The law required Senate confirmation for the governor’s Cabinet members, which previous governors have not needed. The law was approved in December, just two weeks before Roy Cooper took over as governor.

A three-judge panel released the order Wednesday, just before state senators scheduled a hearing with the secretary of Cooper’s veterans’ affairs department to come before a committee to answer questions.

Republican lawmakers say the state Constitution gives the senators “advice and consent” powers over gubernatorial appointments. Cooper says the law is unconstitutional.

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