CHARLOTTE, NC (WBTV) - North Carolina Governor Pat McCrory was blunt Friday morning, when he appeared on a Charlotte-area radio show and the discussion of Charlotte losing the All-Star Game was broached.
"I think it's total P.C. B.S.," McCrory said on WFAE's "Charlotte Talks."
The National Basketball League announce Thursday it was moving the 2017 All-Star Game from Charlotte over concerns about the state's House Bill 2.
HB2 requires individuals to use the bathroom corresponding to the gender listed on their birth certificate in government buildings, schools and universities, and initially took away the ability of employees to sue their employers in state court for discrimination or wrongful termination.
The bill was passed in a one-day special session in late March and was signed by Governor Pat McCrory later that night.
It came as a response to a non-discrimination ordinance passed in February by the Charlotte City Council. The ordinance broadly defined how businesses should treat gay, lesbian and transgender customers. The debate, as in other cities, focused on bathrooms.
Last month, On Your Side Investigates obtained legislation drafted by leadership in the North Carolina House of Representatives which sought to walk back portions of House Bill 2 after discussions with the NBA. The North Carolina General Assembly failed to pass a bill that would have made changes.
Monday, McCrory sign a bill that is slated to restore workers' ability to use state law to sue over workplace discrimination. The bill does not enhance workplace protections for sexual orientation or gender identity.
Friday, McCrory said he believes disagreements over HB2 are "worth of a debate," but said that debate should be in a courtroom.
"I never heard of this issue [transgender bathrooms] when I ran for governor both times," McCrory said on the radio.
When asked about the bill's quick passage and signing, McCrory said it happened because he supported a majority of the bill.
"I read it and I agreed with everything in it but the [court access]" McCrory said. He added that he signed quickly because he "wanted the legislature to get out of town."
"It's only one bill, it was about two pages long," he said.
After his conversation on the radio, McCrory talked with members of Charlotte's media.
"Everyone talks about HB2, but most people don't know what's in the bill, including the media frankly," he said during a press conference after his radio appearance. "But I changed, last week, the part which I disagreed with and that's the ability to sue for discrimination in state courts. And that was the part I objected to."
"I don't think it's Charlotte's business to tell private business what its bathroom, shower and locker room policy should be," he said about the non-discrimination ordinance.
He sat down with WBTV in February, about a month before HB2 was introduced and signed, and changing restroom rules could "create major public safety issues."
"Your own individual privacy, you expect based upon our past values and standards, to have, within those confines of using a facility, certain aspects of privacy," McCrory said during a sit-down interview with WBTV's Steve Crump. "Everyone is impacted by this and I just think it's a wrong thing to do and it has ramifications beyond the city of Charlotte and that's why I'm engaging."
"I think [it] breaks the basic standards, and frankly expectations, of privacy that all individuals - men and women and children alike - would expect in a restroom facility or a locker room facility," he continued. "I think they are creating a lot of potential problems."