Rep. Tricia Cotham’s betrayal continues to harm the LGBTQ+ community she claimed to be ‘a champion of’ while campaigning

Rep. Tricia Cotham’s betrayal continues to harm the LGBTQ+ community she claimed to be ‘a champion of’ while campaigning

North Carolina Republicans are preparing to override Gov. Roy Cooper’s vetoes on three anti-trans youth bills.

Override votes were planned for this week, but they were pushed back because many Republicans decided to take an extra week of vacation after they were off all of last week for the Fourth of July holiday.

The three bills that Republicans will override are all anti-LGBTQ+ culture war legislation – House Bill 574 (Fairness in Women’s Sports Act), House Bill 808 (Gender Transition/Minors) and Senate Bill 49 (Parents’ Bill of Rights).

HB 574 bans trans students from participating on an athletic team that aligns with their gender, HB 808 outlaws life-saving treatment for trans youth by making it illegal for health professionals to provide gender-affirming care, and SB 49 will require teachers to “out” LGBTQ+ students to their parents.

The odds that these vetoes get overridden are extremely high and Democrat-turned-Republican Rep. Tricia Cotham (R-Mecklenburg) is who we should direct our anger at because she is the one who gave the NCGOP a supermajority in the House, and thus, supermajorities in both chambers.

In 2022, Cotham ran in her heavily-blue district on a platform of protecting abortion rights, gun reform, health care as a right and supporting LGBTQ+ rights. 

In fact, while campaigning, Cotham said: 

“I have been a champion of LGBTQ+ rights throughout my public service … Right now, LGBTQ+ youth are under attack by Republican state legislatures across the country. I will stand strong against discriminatory legislation and work to pass more protections at the state level.”

Do you want to guess how she has voted on all the NCGOP’s anti-LGBTQ+ legislation this session? If you guessed “the opposite of what she campaigned on” then you would be correct.

Cotham was elected with 59% of the vote in state House District 112 and she represents an area that voted for President Biden by a more than 2-to-1 margin over Donald Trump in 2020. Her constituents would never have elected her had she run as a Republican and not only did she betray them by switching parties just a few months into the legislative session, she has voted against every single thing she said she supported while she was running for office.

Cooper’s vetoes have a chance to be upheld if Cotham votes how she told her constituents she would.

Patrick Zarcone

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