Dozens of canceled conventions, boycotts from more than a dozen states and major cities, and no more NBA All-Star game. That’s just for starters. But nope, not a scratch on the economy says the budget director for North Carolina Gov. Pat McCrory. From his op-ed in the Charlotte Observer:
One of the benefits of being the Budget Director is that I am a numbers guy, not a politician. I am asked by credit rating agencies and various groups to give updates on North Carolina’s economy, and I occasionally get questions about the Public Facilities Privacy and Security Act (HB2).
My response is that I leave it to the politicians to debate the merits of HB2, but I also point out that this is a national issue over which millions of people are split. It is an issue that will be resolved in the courts, and I maintain that HB2 is an election-year political issue rather than an economic issue.
The HB2 questions are generally fueled by a false narrative that the law is having a devastating economic impact. This narrative has been so consistently pushed by advocacy groups that people are having an emotional response to it rather than basing what they believe on facts.
In the budget office, however, we are data-driven and do not base our positions on emotion, anecdotal evidence or speculation about the state’s reputation in elite circles.
The entertainers and businesses who have chosen to cancel shows, games or jobs as a form of political speech are free to do so, but those few actions will not affect the state’s overall economic position. The vast majority of entertainers, athletes and businesses are not falling for the false narrative.
While this issue is being addressed in the courts, the world still turns. North Carolina businesses continue to grow, and our tax revenues continue to beat expectations.