RALEIGH, N.C. (AP) - The Latest on (all times local):
North Carolina Gov. Roy Cooper is asking a court to halt enforcement of a new law making his Cabinet secretaries subject to confirmation in the state Senate before his first department head is supposed to go before a Senate committee.
Cooper’s office says attorneys filed a motion in Wake County court late Monday asking for the temporary block. Cooper’s lawyers argue the confirmation mandate approved by Republican lawmakers just before Cooper took office is unconstitutional and would disrupt his appointees’ effort to supervise their departments.
Senate leaders say it’s clear the state Constitution allows the chamber to subject department heads to confirmation. They’ve asked Cooper’s secretary for military and veterans’ affairs to answer questions Wednesday.
Cooper had asked Senate leader Phil Berger earlier Monday to delay the confirmation activity until the courts ruled. A spokesman for the governor says he expects a hearing on the motion Tuesday.
North Carolina Gov. Roy Cooper is still resisting overtures by Republican state senators for his Cabinet secretaries to come before them starting this week for confirmations the new governor argues are unconstitutional.
In public statements Cooper and state Senate leader Phil Berger each wouldn’t give any ground to the other Monday, two days before Cooper’s secretary of military and veterans’ affairs is supposed to come before a committee to answer questions. Senators have scheduled committee meetings with Cooper’s seven other announced secretaries through mid-March.
The General Assembly passed a law just before Cooper took office directing the Cabinet be subject to the “advice and consent” of a majority of senators. Cooper sued last month over the confirmation mandate, saying it only applies to “constitutional officers” and not his department heads.
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