Nets Hype Justice Department Accusing North Carolina of Civil Rights Violations

On Thursday, all three network morning shows dutifully promoted the Obama Justice Department threatening to sue North Carolina over its transgender bathroom law and accusing the state of violating the Civil Rights Act.

On NBC’s Today, fill-in co-host Natalie Morales breathlessly proclaimed: “New fallout this morning over North Carolina’s controversial transgender law. The Justice Department sent letters to Governor Pat McCrory and state lawmakers saying the newly enacted law violates the U.S. Civil Rights Act and cannot be enforced....The Department of Justice says North Carolina has until Monday now to respond.”

The headline on screen read: “Civil Rights Violations?; Justice Department Puts North Carolina on Notice.”

On ABC’s Good Morning America, news anchor Amy Robach declared: “Well, a new battle over North Carolina's so-called transgender bathroom law....The Justice Department says the law violates Title IX of the Civil Rights Act. It’s given the state until Monday to address the conflict or risk losing federal school funding.”

The on-screen headline hyped: “Transgender Bathroom Rule Illegal?; Feds Challenge North Carolina Law.”

On CBS This Morning, co-host Charlie Rose announced: “The federal government could sue North Carolina over a controversial new law....The Justice Department sent a warning yesterday to Governor Pat McCrory. It says the law, accused of limiting protections to LGBT people, violates the Civil Rights Act.”

He further touted: “Backlash began when lawmakers passed the measure in March. It requires transgender people to use bathrooms that match the sex of their birth certificates. North Carolina faces losing hundreds of millions of dollars in federal funding.”

The headline on screen asserted: “No to North Carolina; DOJ Says Proposed LGBT Limits Violate Civil Rights.”

Missing from any of the reporting were statements from North Carolina lawmakers refusing to back down. According to The Los Angeles Times:

On Thursday, House Speaker Tim Moore said legislators would not meet the federal government’s deadline.

“We will take no action by Monday,” Moore told the Raleigh News & Observer. “That deadline will come and go. We don’t ever want to lose any money, but we’re not going to get bullied by the Obama administration to take action prior to Monday’s date. That’s not how this works.”

In a statement, McCrory said he would review the letter to determine the state’s next steps. “The Obama administration has not only staked out its position for North Carolina, but for all states, universities and most employers in the U.S.” McCrory said. “The right and expectation of privacy in one of the most private areas of our personal lives is now in jeopardy.”

Other Republican leaders also reacted strongly against the letter. Phil Berger, the president pro tempore of the North Carolina Senate, called the letter “a gross overreach by the Obama Justice Department that deserves to be struck down in federal court.”

Here are transcripts of the three May 5 news briefs from the NBC, ABC, and CBS morning shows:

Today
7:14 AM ET

NATALIE MORALES: New fallout this morning over North Carolina’s controversial transgender law.

[ON-SCREEN HEADLINE: Civil Rights Violations?; Justice Department Puts North Carolina on Notice]

The Justice Department sent letters to Governor Pat McCrory and state lawmakers saying the newly enacted law violates the U.S. Civil Rights Act and cannot be enforced. The law requires transgender people to use public bathrooms that conform to the sex on their birth certificate. The Department of Justice says North Carolina has until Monday now to respond.


Good Morning America
7:15 AM ET

AMY ROBACH: Well, a new battle over North Carolina's so-called transgender bathroom law, which requires people to use bathrooms corresponding to their birth gender.

[ON-SCREEN HEADLINE: Transgender Bathroom Rule Illegal?; Feds Challenge North Carolina Law]

The Justice Department says the law violates Title IX of the Civil Rights Act. It’s given the state until Monday to address the conflict or risk losing federal school funding.


CBS This Morning
7:18 AM ET

CHARLIE ROSE: The federal government could sue North Carolina over a controversial new law.

[ON-SCREEN HEADLINE: No to North Carolina; DOJ Says Proposed LGBT Limits Violate Civil Rights]

The Justice Department sent a warning yesterday to Governor Pat McCrory. It says the law, accused of limiting protections to LGBT people, violates the Civil Rights Act.

Backlash began when lawmakers passed the measure in March. It requires transgender people to use bathrooms that match the sex of their birth certificates. North Carolina faces losing hundreds of millions of dollars in federal funding.

NB Daily Culture/Society Conservatives & Republicans Liberals & Democrats Transgender ABC Good Morning America CBS CBS This Morning NBC Today North Carolina Video Natalie Morales Amy Robach Charlie Rose

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