The White House responded to a petition calling for North Carolina to secede by saying "as we value a healthy debate, we don't let that debate tear us apart." And no, it can't secede.
The petition on the White House website for North Carolina "to withdraw from the United States and create its own NEW government" received nearly 32,000 signatures. It is one of eight states -- all in the South -- to solicit signatures. (Another petition, with about 30,000 signatures, calls to deport everyone who signed one of the secession petitions.)
Jon Carson, the director of the White House's Office of Public Engagement, quoted Abraham Lincoln and thanked those who used the online petitions, saying he understands democracy "can be noisy and controversial."