Dear Sen. Apodaca,
Last week I wrote an open letter to both Rep. Tim Moore and Lt. Gov. Dan Forest on their active roles in convening a special session of the General Assembly to craft, push, and pass the most prejudiced piece of legislation in recent memory. I noted that it was sadistically ironic that their claim to “protect women and children” actually went out of its way to discriminate citizens.
And I would be remiss if I did not mention your role in creating the venomous HB2, its fallout, and the continuing national backlash that threatens to hurt North Carolina not only economically but in how the rest of our nation views us through a different lens.
If Friday’s (3/25) report by Derek Lacey on BlueRidgeNow.com is read correctly, you actually wanted to charge the city of Charlotte the cost of having the special session to overturn its ordinance (http://www.blueridgenow.com/article/20160324/NEWS/160329873/1151?Title=Apodaca-calls-for-Charlotte-to-cover-cost-of-special-session&tc=ar.) Even you seem to be taking a turn at sardonic irony with what may be the most egregious notion of the last three years to come from West Jones Street.
Mr. Lacey reported that you asked your staff to “look and see how the General Assembly can charge Charlotte to cover the costs of Wednesday’s special session, including the possibility of withholding the city’s sales tax revenues.” And why? You claimed because “Charlotte brought this all upon themselves.”
For someone rated “the second most effective legislator the past two sessions” according to the Henderson Lightning (“Apodaca bowing out”), you allowed your puritan ideology to cloud sound judgement over what is best for the state. You allowed your personality to override principles. You became the antithesis of what an elected official should be. You became a walking contradiction of the very representative you claim to be.
Sen. Apodaca, you (and many other senior GOP state legislators) have indicated that you will not seek reelection for another term. You therefore have one more “long session” left in your career as a state senator, and with the winds blowing so erratically this election season, there may be some method to your madness and the madness of other GOP lawmakers in having this special short session to pass HB2.
If I view this in a certain lens, your actions last week just might have been a brilliant maneuver to create more business opportunities for your post-legislative days.
Taking a look at your biography on your personal website, www.senatorapodaca.com, you talk of your success as a businessman. Now that you will not be seeking reelection you will be able to concentrate on your “current interests” including “bond insurance, real estate investment, and a travel agency.”
Think about it. First, with the overturning of the Charlotte ordinance you have brought to light the amazing amount of illegal activity concerning people intentionally going to the wrong bathroom to prey on women and children (emphasis on the tongue-in-cheek tone). While I do not have empirical evidence of this, it obviously was going to occur so much that you had to have a special session of the NCGA to do something about it (kind like all of that voter fraud that has been stopped witht eh voter ID law). Now those people can be brought to justice and many of them will need to have bail posted.
As a bails bondman, you may profit from that.
Secondly, with the passing of HB2, we may see real estate (especially commercial real estate) start to become a buyer’s market. Since untold numbers of industries and companies are voicing disapproval of the bill and refusing to continue commerce here, there will be less business taking place in North Carolina because of boycotting. But the buildings will still be there. Maybe buy cheap and sell later when the courts overturn HB2 because of its unconstitutionality and we start to regain some of that lost business?
Again, more profit for you.
Lastly, your travel agency venture will probably do fantastically as many from NC seek to vacation in other parts of the country like South Carolina, Virginia, Tennessee, and possibly Georgia (to name the closest destinations) where LBGTQ people are not discriminated against by law like they are now in North Carolina. In fact some of those vacations may be permanent.
Once more, more profit for you.
While that might be farfetched to even imagine as a possible motive for you in helping pass HB2, what is more mindboggling is that you actually suggested that Charlotte pay for your actions by withholding some of the city’s tax revenues. You even had the nerve to admonish them for making you convene a special session. You stated in Lacey’s article that they knew exactly what “this” would cause.
But for someone who has been garnered numerous awards for “pro-business” politics (http://www.senatorapodaca.com/awards3.html), you may have done more with those words and with that legislative vote to drive away business from the Old North State than can be remedied in many years to come. And that’s not just ironic; that’s corrosive.
If Charlotte’s mayor and city council could have consulted a crystal ball and seen what their actions would have “caused,” then I know they would still have voted to pass a protective ordinance for the LGBT community anyway because they were acting in the best interests of the very people they represent. They would have also seen that you and other GOP members would have outlawed the use of crystal balls because that is not specifically covered under religious freedom legislation.
Yet, while the GOP-led NCGA (with you as its second most effective legislator) has moved to strike down Charlotte’s ordinance, HB2 will be overturned. No crystal ball is needed to see that. A Federal lawsuit is already been filed and the governor is already showing that he has no viable way of defending the bill.
In the court of public opinion in this state and in the entire country, a verdict has already been reached in this matter. It is only a matter of time that the courts follow.
And if it costs the taxpayers money to defend this bill because the NCGA stubbornly tries to defend it, maybe the citizens should look to see if you and other legislators who voted in favor of HB2 could be charge to cover the costs.
And when elections for governor and others to replace legislators (like yourself) go in favor of democrats, I may just look back on this past week and say of the very GOP members who championed HB2, “they brought it all upon themselves.”