Obviously, it’s beyond the pale and unacceptable for people to go after lawmakers’ minor children. But perhaps there’s a good reason Democrats have recently expressed frustration toward Cotham herself.
Per the Times:
In recent days, there had been signs of a fissure between Ms. Cotham and Democrats. Her absence during a floor vote last week allowed Republicans to override [Democratic governor Roy] Cooper’s veto of a bill removing a permit requirement for handguns. It was the first Republican override of Mr. Cooper’s veto since 2018.
Said Democrats might also be upset given what’s at stake and what Cotham’s party-switching could mean for the people of North Carolina in the future:
A reliable Democratic vote when she served in the House from 2007 to 2017, she once stood on the House floor and shared her experience of having an abortion, calling it “a deeply personal decision” and accusing Republican lawmakers of “wanting to play doctor.” Ms. Cotham, 44, whose district sits outside Charlotte, ran again successfully for the chamber in November on a platform of raising the minimum wage, protecting voting rights, and bolstering LGBTQ rights.
Now, however, her decision helps Republicans cement razor-thin but complete control over a second chamber of the legislature, giving them the ability to bypass…Cooper, a Democrat, and create a glide path for their legislative agenda. Republican leaders have indicated a desire to seek new restrictions on abortion and tighten the state’s voting laws, among other issues. In the House, Republicans will have the 72 votes they need to override Mr. Cooper’s vetoes; they already have a veto-proof majority in the Senate. Though Republicans have long controlled the legislature, they lost their supermajorities in both chambers in 2018, leaving Mr. Cooper with the ability to block GOP bills. Since taking office in 2017, he has turned back more than 75 such measures.
In a statement issued Tuesday, when news of Cotham’s defection was first reported by Axios, Cooper said the lawmaker’s decision was “disappointing,” adding: “Representative Cotham’s votes on women’s reproductive freedom, election laws, LGBTQ rights, and strong public schools will determine the direction of the state we love. It’s hard to believe she would abandon these long-held principles, and she should still vote the way she has always said she would vote when these issues arise, regardless of party affiliation.” According to the Times, “as of Tuesday afternoon, Ms. Cotham had not spoken to Democratic colleagues about her plans, nor had she contacted State Representative Robert Reives, the party’s leader in the House, he said in an interview.”
In a statement, Reives said: “The appropriate action is for her to resign so that her constituents are fairly represented in the North Carolina House of Representatives.”
It’s unclear at this time how Cotham will vote now that she’s switched sides, though she apparently did not care to reassure anyone that she would still do what she could to protect abortion rights. When asked how she might vote on upcoming GOP legislation restricting the medical procedure, she merely said, “I’m going to vote my conscience.”
Melania Trump apparently RSVP’d “f—k off” to her husband’s post-arraignment speech
Shortly before the news broke last week that Donald Trump would, in fact, be indicted, we learned that Melania Trump was reportedly still angry about her husband’s alleged affair with porn star Stormy Daniels and did not “sympathize” with the fact that he was facing criminal charges and possibly even time in prison. Now that the ex-president has been formally charged—with 34 class E felonies—and is looking at a potential century-plus behind bars if convicted on all counts, the question is whether the former first lady still feels that way. After all, it’s one thing to tell your spouse they made their bed and must now lie in it when you think there’s no chance of their becoming a convicted criminal—it’s another when they’re actually forced to surrender and could spend the rest of your marriage behind bars. Melania, of course, has not said anything publicly about the matter—but one hint that she may not be too broken up about all this? The fact that she skipped her husband’s post-arraignment speech last night.
Yes, following her decision to not accompany the ex-president when he appeared in court on Tuesday, the former first lady chose not to show up for Trump’s rambling remarks at Mar-a-Lago later that day, despite literally living on-site. Another no-show was Ivanka Trump, and while that was pretty much to be expected, the former first daughter still got a shout-out from her dad when he listed his “great” family members. “I have a son here who’s done a great job, and I have another son here who’s done a great job…and Tiffany and Ivanka. And Barron will be great someday. He’s tall. He is tall and he’s smart,” Trump said last night, adding: “But I have a great family and they’ve done a fantastic job, and we appreciate it very much. They’ve gone through hell.” Donald Trump Jr., Eric Trump, and Tiffany Trump were all present, as were their respective partners, Kimberly Guilfoyle, Lara Trump, and Michael Boulos.
During her time as first lady, Melania made it pretty clear that she despised her husband. So it’s possible she’s downright thrilled at the prospect of his doing 136 years in prison and thus spent last night celebrating.
Anyway, speaking of Trump’s speech, it was unsurprisingly chock-full of lies and conspiracy theories. On Wednesday, after pleading not guilty to all 34 felony charges, the ex-president and current 2024 presidential candidate declared that congressional Republicans should “defund” the Department of Justice and Federal Bureau of Investigation until the agencies “come to their senses.” Which we assume means “take over the Manhattan district attorney’s office and make it drop its case against me.”