McCrory signs bill pushed by GOP lawmakers - | WBTV Charlotte

McCrory signs bill pushed by GOP lawmakers

(Source: WBTV/File) (Source: WBTV/File)

North Carolina Republican Gov. Pat McCrory has quickly signed into law a GOP-backed bill that would strip the incoming Democratic governor of some of his powers.

Documents from General Assembly staff confirm the outgoing governor signed the measure Friday afternoon, shortly after the legislature's final vote.

Democrats argue this and another piece of legislation is a power grab by the GOP after McCrory lost the gubernatorial election to Democrat Roy Cooper, who takes office Jan. 1.

The law merges the State Board of Elections and State Ethics Commission into one board comprised equally of Democrats and Republicans. The previous state elections board law would have allowed Cooper to put a majority of Democrats on the panel.

Democratic Rep. Graig Meyer says Republicans are trying to overturn the will of the voters with the legislation. GOP lawmakers disagree.

The law would also make elections for appellate court judgeships officially partisan again.

Another bill nearing final legislative approval would force Cooper's Cabinet choices to be subject to Senate confirmation.

Friday afternoon, at least two people were led away from inside the North Carolina Legislative Building after disruptions caused the state Senate to halt debate.

Police made the arrests inside the Senate gallery Friday after Lt. Gov. Dan Forest warned the audience above the Senate floor to remain quiet. The Senate resumed debate 30 minutes after the entire gallery was cleared.

General Assembly police say 16 people were arrested earlier Friday during disruptions while the House debated another bill.

Copyright 2016 The Associated Press. All rights reserved.

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