Sen. Gunn Responds to Gov. Cooper’s Veto of Economic Lifeline for Bars, Restaurants

More than 1 Million Unemployed, and Cooper Won’t Let Them Go Back to Work

Just as more than 1 million North Carolinians filed for unemployment, Gov. Roy Cooper vetoed House Bill 536, which would have allowed bars and restaurants to reopen with expanded outdoor seating, bringing back thousands of jobs in one of the state’s hardest-hit industries.

“This bill was intended to be a safe, economic lifeline for the hundreds of thousands of North Carolinians that lost their job and are still waiting for relief from Gov. Cooper,” Sen. Rick Gunn (R-Alamance) said. “At a time when the state is facing one of its worst economic crises, Gov. Cooper should be looking for ways to get our citizens back to work. Now citizens that were counting on coming back to work will have to get back on the phone and hope his administration finally pays their claims.”

Gov. Cooper’s executive orders make it so citizens can go to a brewery and sit at a table with friends while enjoying a drink, but they can’t sit at an identical table and have a drink at a bar. How is that fair? It’s not.

Gov. Cooper is picking winners and losers, and chalking it up to “science and data” even though several other states are using science and data to allow expanded outdoor seating. Gov. Cooper has yet to explain the facts behind his decisions.

Now, with more than 1 million North Carolinians unemployed, Gov. Cooper shows that at a time when neighboring states are opening up and more than 2.5 million jobs were added in the U.S. last month, he’d rather keep the state shutdown and not tell us why.

“Just a few days ago Gov. Cooper took a stroll without a mask on and in close proximity to dozens of protestors,” Sen. Gunn said. “Yet he determines that visiting a bar with strict safety precautions is a bigger public health risk. His hypocrisy knows no bounds.”

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