Thursday, the day after the opening of the North Carolina General Assembly, the North Carolina Chapter of Americans for Prosperity (AFPNC) announced their priorities for the session.
- Passage of a repeal of North Carolina’s Renewable Portfolio Standard;
- Passage of legislation seeking to push back and limit the EPA’s overreach of power into North Carolina’s electrical grid;
- Patient-centered health care reform through reform of the state’s Certificate of Need (CON) laws and Right to Try legislation;
- Defeat of any legislation seeking to expand Medicaid;
- Medicaid reforms that will prevent the risk of cost overruns by state government;
- Continuing the path of comprehensive tax reform by reducing the tax burden on North Carolinians and eliminating corporate welfare;
- Repeal or reform of the state’s capital gains tax;
- Passage of legislative spending limits that could include a Taxpayer Bill of Rights (TABOR);
- Increasing educational freedom for North Carolina families by expanding the Opportunity Scholarship Program and removing barriers to entry for charter schools;
- Eliminating barriers to entry for small businesses by reforming North Carolina’s occupational licensure laws; and
- In general, greatly reducing the regulatory burden on businesses and citizens.
This legislative agenda is being promoted in conjunction with the national AFP’s Reform America 2015.
State director Donald Bryson stated that AFPNC works year round to advocate for good policy, not just during election cycles.
AFPNC uses six region field directors in North Carolina to drum up support for its legislative agenda and then has citizens make their views known to their members. This grassroots effort is something AFP has been successful with since its founding. AFPNC has also done well with its national agenda, following the lead of the American’s for Prosperity.
The group has been so successful that it drew the attention of President Obama.
In a speech at a Democratic finance event in 2009, President Obama insulted the members of AFP thusly:
Right now all around this country there are groups with harmless-sounding names like Americans for Prosperity, who are running millions of dollars of ads against Democratic candidates all across the country. And they don’t have to say who exactly the Americans for Prosperity are. You don’t know if it’s a foreign-controlled corporation. You don’t know if it’s a big oil company, or a big bank. You don’t know if it’s a insurance company that wants to see some of the provisions in health reform repealed because it’s good for their bottom line, even if it’s not good for the American people.
Later in the speech, the Obama added:
They don’t want you to know who the Americans for Prosperity are, because they’re thinking about the next election. But we’ve got to think about future generations. We’ve got to make sure that we’re fighting for reform. We’ve got to make sure that we don’t have a corporate takeover of our democracy.
At every national event, the group runs this video to great cheers.
AFP, with its sound fiscal policy ideals, is working for the future. Just not in the way Obama imagines it.
If you get a call from AFPNC to volunteer or to contact your legislator, please do! It’s our future to lose.