Good morning. Just sitting here enjoying a bowl of Kroger® bran flakes and catching up on the news of yesterday. Join me, won’t you?
1. Hillary Clinton formally wins Democratic nomination. Lots of hoopla in Philadelphia last night in celebration of the first woman ever picked to lead a major party in America. Bill Clinton gave a rousing and heartfelt speech. Bernie Sanders made a strong gesture toward unity. Madeline Albright discussed how terrifying it is that Trump thinks Putin is a cool dude. Lena Dunham was there, too? We’ve got a man on the ground covering the spectacle. Check back here later today for his report. Obama and Biden take the stage tonight.
2. New cycling laws coming to North Carolina. The News & Observer reports on upcoming changes for bicyclists and motorists:
On Oct. 1, state law will change so drivers can pass slower-moving bicycles or mopeds in no-passing zones if the motorist gives a berth of at least 4 feet and if the cyclist is not making a left turn.
But aggressive motorists whose actions cause a cyclist to change travel lanes, leave the road or crash will suffer stiffer penalties, pay higher fines and possibly lose their driver’s license for several months, under the amended law.
Another change requires cyclists riding at night, effective Dec. 1, to add a light on the back of the bike to the one already required on the front – or wear a reflective vest or clothing that is visible from at least 300 feet to the rear. Hand signals have been clarified for cyclists who got used to throwing a right arm out to the side to indicate they were turning in that direction. Now, cyclists should use their left arm for hand signals, pointing the hand straight up to indicate a right turn.
The new rules can be read in full here.
3. Appeals court won’t reconsider ruling on Wake County gerrymandering. Earlier this month, a federal panel ruled that Wake County districting maps drawn in 2013 were unconstitutional. Republicans subsequently appealed that decision. Yesterday, they lost their appeal. From the N&O:
The U.S. Fourth Circuit Court of Appeals rejected a request to reconsider its July 1 ruling that declared the state legislature’s election maps for the Wake County Board of Commissioners and school board to be unconstitutional.
The order released Tuesday puts the onus back on U.S. Chief District Court Judge James C. Dever III, who has yet to tell state lawmakers and election officials whether there will be an election this fall and what maps will be used. The decision lifts an order that had put on hold a ruling that the districts can’t be used in the Nov. 8 elections.
…Wake election officials told Dever they need to know which lines to use by Aug. 10, which is the deadline for write-in candidates to petition for space on the ballot. Absentee ballots are scheduled to be mailed to voters beginning Sept. 9.
Tim Moore and Phil Berger say it’s too late to change the maps, and that they should be redrawn after the election. Hmm…
4. Durham Police Department adds new officers. Twelve new police officers were formally sworn in by the DPD Tuesday evening. From TWC News:
Police Chief Cerelyn Davis commended the 12 officers for choosing a career in public service during a critical time in the country.
“At this particular time in history, it’s difficult for law enforcement, it’s difficult for communities,” she said. “It’s important that these officers understand that in sensitive times like these, we as a law enforcement agency have to continue to prove and demonstrate our willingness to understand communities.”
Davis says the department is still looking to fill about forty other vacancies.
5. N.C. GOP whining that Dems “celebrated” losses over HB 2. Fallout from the Wikileaks DNC email scandal continues. In addition to somebody in the DNC calling Pat McCrory a “moronic little bigot of a tarheel [sic] governor”, which, lol, there is also evidence that a Democratic staffer was in some way pleased by a HB 2-inspired cancellation of a rock concert in North Carolina. From the Charlotte Observer:
The North Carolina Republican Party said emails released by WikiLeaks showed Democrats “celebrated” the economic damage caused by House Bill 2 and revealed “intentional sabotage” to the state’s economy by Democrats.
One of the leaked emails, released by Wikileaks, showed that a Democratic Party staffer wrote “Awesome” in an email thread about the cancellation of a Pearl Jam concert.
…State GOP executive director Dallas Woodhouse held a press conference Tuesday in Charlotte with county GOP officials and a few small-business owners.
Woodhouse said the emails show the Democratic Party had politicized the issue from the start.
“They celebrated when pain was inflicted on the people of North Carolina,” Woodhouse said. “They tried to cause a political firestorm no matter the cost. The blood is on their hands.”
Just keep telling yourselves that, fellas.
That’s all for now. Enjoy your day.