“It is on life support,” said Moore, a Cleveland County Republican.
Debate on the proposed constitutional amendment, sponsored by Rep. Stephen LaRoque, R-Lenoir, has been delayed until March 30. LaRoque told me the other day that he’s trying to secure enough votes to pass the bill, but doesn’t think he has them yet.
He said he knew of a couple of Republicans who were going to vote against it and a couple of Democrats who were supporting it.
But that’s not enough to get it through the House and move it to the Senate. Constitutional amendments require a three-fifths majority of both chambers before being sent to the voters for ratification. That means it needs 72 votes in the House and 30 in the Senate to survive.
“It was apparent to me that it was going to fall short of 72 votes,” Moore said. “I don’t think it has much of a chance at all.”
The proposed amendment would declare open government as a right in North Carolina. Current exemptions to public records and open meetings laws would remain in effect. However, it would require a three-fifths supermajority vote of both the House and the Senate to further records or meetings from the law.