New NC GOP Governor Tweaks Traditional Inaugural Plans

Friday, 28 Dec 2012 11:07 AM

By Bill Hoffmann

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Pat McCrory — North Carolina’s first Republican governor in 20 years — has ruffled feathers by making changes to some of the state’s traditional inauguration events.
The 56-year-old former mayor of Charlotte will break tradition by moving forward his official swearing-in ceremony and relocating it to the old House chamber at the state Capitol, the Charlotte Observer reports.
In addition, only members of McCrory’s family and Cabinet officials will be able to watch him take the official oath as governor inside the Capitol.

And the governor-elect is allowing only one reporter and one television camera to attend as part of a media “pool’’ arrangement — a first in recent memory for a governor of the Tar Heel State, according to the Observer.

The changes have surprised some political observers.

“He’s being sworn into office for all of North Carolina. It’s just surprising he wouldn’t want to share it,” Michael Bitzer, who teaches political science at Catawba College, told the newspaper.

“As much as he campaigned on government openness and transparency, the move just seems odd,” he said.

But aides to McCrory say the old House chamber — built by slave laborers and where Lawmakers voted to secede from the nation in 1861 — is too small to accommodate the public and other reporters.

The Observer says McCrory still plans to attend the traditional Junior League Ball, where his first dance will be to the Van Morrison song “Crazy Love.”

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