Lynn Bonner

Lynn Bonner

Investigative Reporter Lynn Bonner covers the state legislature and politics, as well as elections, the state budget, public and mental health, safety net programs and issues of racial equality.

the North Carolina Legislative Building

In NC, the governor’s vetoes and the legislature’s override votes are coming in batches

By: - June 26, 2023

Gov. Roy Cooper’s veto stamp is doing double-duty this month, and bills he rejected are piling up the legislature awaiting override votes.  On Friday, Cooper vetoed the Farm Act over its weakened wetlands protections along with a bill that prohibits consideration of environmental, social, and governance factors in state investing, or hiring and evaluating state […]

Abortion pills

NC Republicans spring surprise changes to the new abortion law following a legal challenge

By: - June 22, 2023

Senate Republicans voted to change the new North Carolina law banning most abortions after 12 weeks following a legal challenge by abortion providers.  Planned Parenthood South Atlantic and a Duke University Ob/Gyn sued last week over inconsistencies in the abortion law and a provision they contend may violate the First Amendment.  The law restricting abortion […]

the entrance to a voting precinct

NC Republican proposed voting restrictions fit a red-state pattern

By: - June 22, 2023

North Carolina is joining a group of Republican-led states that are imposing new restrictions on voting and exerting legislative control over elections boards. Republican senators passed controversial bills that would make it harder for people who vote by mail or sign up to vote during early registration periods and have their ballots count. They seek […]

Gov. Roy Cooper speaks at a rally for abortion rights supporters.

Planned Parenthood sues over new NC abortion law

By: - June 16, 2023

Planned Parenthood South Atlantic filed a federal lawsuit Friday over the new North Carolina law limiting abortion, saying its provisions are contradictory, add further harm to rape victims, and may violate the First Amendment. Most of the North Carolina law banning abortion after 12 weeks of pregnancy except in cases of rape, incest, “life-limiting fetal […]

NC Senate Republican elections ideas endanger early voting access, critics say

By: - June 15, 2023

Voting rights advocates warned that changes Republican senators seek to impose on North Carolina put counties on track to dramatically shrink early voting locations and hours.  Under the Republicans’ proposal, Democratic and Republican legislative leaders would make equal appointments to local boards of election and the state Board of Elections.  Republicans said the remade elections […]

Shruti Parikh of NC Asian Americans Together

NC Republicans ready votes on new elections laws that opponents call extreme

By: - June 14, 2023

Voting rights groups and Democrats oppose North Carolina Republican senators’ proposed changes to election laws, saying they will harm elderly, disabled, and student voters, and voters of color. The Senate has proposed two bills changing voting rules and stripping governors of their power to appoint members of the state Board of Elections, giving that power […]

Gold bar as currency

NC House Republicans want state savings held as gold bullion

By: - June 13, 2023

North Carolina House Republicans want the state to use some of its savings to buy gold bullion and bury it in Texas.  A group of House Republicans filed a bill in mid-April that would have the state use $2 billion from its savings reserve to buy gold bullion. The bill sat idle in the House […]

NC Republican elections proposal would strip the governor of appointment power

By: - June 12, 2023

North Carolina Senate Republicans propose to remake the state Board of Elections by increasing membership from five members to eight and by taking all appointment power away from the governor and giving it to the legislature.  This is the latest of several attempts by legislative Republicans to alter the elections board. Previous GOP attempts were […]

the North Carolina Legislative Building

NC Gov. Cooper signs Blue Cross reorganization bill

By: - June 12, 2023

Non-profit Blue Cross NC is now allowed to act more like a for-profit insurance company. Gov. Roy Cooper signed House bill 346 over the weekend, which allows the state’s dominant health insurer to create a holding company that would work outside the reach of state insurance regulations.  The bill won overwhelming bipartisan support in the […]

NC bill would require special elections in some party-switchers’ districts. (Think Tricia Cotham)

By: - June 6, 2023

The bill might as well be called the No More Cothams Act.  Democrats from Mecklenburg County who voted for Rep. Tricia Cotham last year and say she betrayed them when she became a Republican are backing a bill that would force new elections in some party-switchers’ districts.  A Senate bill filed this week inspired by […]

Rep. Amos Quick

“A jumbo jet of a voter suppression bill.” NC Democrats denounce Republicans’ proposed voting restrictions.

By: and - June 5, 2023

Democrats in the North Carolina legislature are rebuking a new Senate bill that would make it harder for voters to cast mail-in ballots that would count toward candidate totals. Legislative Democrats don’t have enough votes to stop new laws if all Republican legislators vote together.  They hope news of the potential voting restrictions will inspire […]

A person in shadows holds their head in their hand

How to spend $1 billion to improve North Carolina’s mental health system

By: - June 5, 2023

The state House has developed a wide-ranging plan to pay for mental health needs with part of the $1.7 billion federal ‘signing bonus’ the state expects to receive for expanding Medicaid. The House plan that passed the Health Committee last week directs about $1 billion toward mental health costs over three years.  The list of […]