Under the Dome

What's on the menu? Gubernatorial grits and good conversation

Since the first week of the legislative session, Gov. Pat McCrory has invited 29 state lawmakers to breakfast at the mansion, John Frank reports.

The roster includes powerful Republicans -- House and Senate majority leaders and committee chairs -- but not one Democrat, according to a list of names received by The News & Observer through a records request.

The 8 a.m. breakfasts have occurred twice a week so far, with a handful of lawmakers dining at a time.

The first Democrats won't eat gubernatorial grits until next week. House Democratic leader Larry Hall and Reps. William Brisson and Craig Horn are invited Wednesday. Top Senate Democrats Martin Nesbitt and Dan Blue are invited the following morning, according to the guest list.

A McCrory spokeswoman refused to comment on the breakfasts and guest list.

Rep. Nelson Dollar, a Cary Republican, went Wednesday for an All-American breakfast of two scrambled eggs, two slices of bacon, hash browns and fruit. "The food is good," he said.

The conversation is a mix of informal get-to-know you and policy discussions. "I think it is refreshing that we have a governor who is very active and engaged with legislators," the nine-year veteran said. "It was an opportunity to both get to know the governor a little better and for the governor to get to know us."

Dollar, a budget committee chairman, declined to share specifics about his conversation but he said each lawmaker had an "opportunity to talk, ask questions and pass along advice."

"I thought the governor was ... very willing to listen and that's what I appreciated the most," he said.


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Republican legislators dining at the Governor's Mansion?

You got to be kidding. During all the years of Democrat governors the Republicans were bringing their breakfast in a bag. They just never got invited to dine at the Governor's Mansion. That is why McDonald's invented the "Dollar Menu," so that the Republicans could afford to go to a restaurant while the Democrats were breakfasting at the Governor's Mansion. So you can thank the Republican legislators for the "Dollar Menu!"

Did Perdue or Easley ever invite a Dem or a Republican to dine?

Your article is again deceptive as in the teaser you fail to mention that Dems are joining the governor this week. Some points a GOOD reporter would have researched before writing a slanted article include:
- Were any Dems invited before now? Perhaps the Dems were ordered by their leadership to turn down invitations by a leader from across the aisle.
- Has any previous governor ever invited legislators to dine at the mansion? I can't see Bev or Mike ever inviting a Republican to the mansion. McCrory had mentioned that as the longest serving mayor of NC's largest city, he had never seen the inside of the mansion.

Jarvis, there is nothing worse than a biased reporter that is also lazy.

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