Source: The Assembly
North Carolina’s 2023 legislative session is proving to be a busy one. Already the House has passed new rules that would make it easier for Republicans to override the governor’s vetoes by reducing the amount of public notice required for votes. Considering that Republicans are one seat short of a supermajority in the House, if just one Democratic member is unable to be on the house floor, Republicans could override a veto from Gov. Roy Cooper.
Despite the razor-thin margin, House Minority Leader Robert Reives remains upbeat according to the Assembly. As leader, Reives is tasked with keeping House Democrats unified.
Leader Reives is known for being quick on his feet and quick to point out flaws with policies or processes. Reives is also pragmatic, choosing his battles wisely. One battle that he chose to address head-on in this session was abortion.
Republicans in both chambers have expressed their commitment to further restrict abortion in this legislative session.
Reives has drawn a hard line on the issue of abortion, warning Republicans that further restrictions could lead to further inequalities in the medical system. “The minute you start making gradations, you’re changing who has access to what,” Reives said.
Every Democrat in both the House and Senate has signed onto a bill to codify Roe v. Wade; and while it is almost certain that the bill won’t get a committee hearing from House Republicans, Reives viewed the Democrats’ proposed measure as important in displaying to voters the stark contrast between the two parties when it comes to personal freedom and the notion of equality.
“I don’t understand why in so many circumstances we create circumstances where working people are subjected to access and laws that people with means are not,” Reives told the Assembly.
When it comes to other issues, such as the state budget or redrawing House district maps, Reives is widely regarded as approachable and open to working in a bipartisan manner.
“His leadership style is the most collaborative of any leader that I’ve worked with down there,” State Sen. Adcock told the Assembly. “He truly wants everyone to have a piece of the action.”