- Associated Press - Friday, February 10, 2017

RALEIGH, N.C. (AP) - The Latest on a court hearing about Republican lawmakers’ efforts to reduce Democratic North Carolina Gov. Roy Cooper’s authority. (all times local):

3:20 p.m.

A North Carolina law that strips the state’s new Democratic governor from overseeing elections is taking effect — for now — thanks to a court ruling.

A revamped state elections board met for the first time Friday, hours after a state appeals court temporarily reinstated the law. It’s one of two court battles going on simultaneously between Gov. Roy Cooper and the Republican-led legislature.

The election law removes from Cooper the right to appoint all members of the state elections board, and for Democrats to hold majorities on all county elections panels. Republicans would control elections during even-numbered years, when big races for president, legislature or other major statewide offices are held.

Cooper’s attorneys are asking the state Supreme Court to step in an again block the law.

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3 p.m.

North Carolina’s new Democratic governor and the entrenched Republican-led legislature are battling in court again over efforts to restrict the chief executive’s ability to alter the state’s recent conservative direction.

A three-judge panel heard arguments Friday over whether to keep blocking a law requiring Senate confirmation of Gov. Roy Cooper’s Cabinet secretaries.

Cooper’s attorneys say the law gives lawmakers veto power over the top aides the governor appoints to run day-to-day government. Lawyers for GOP lawmakers countered the state Constitution’s separation of powers gave most powers to the legislature.

The two sides also are fighting over a law stripping Cooper of his oversight of elections. A revamped state elections board met for the first time Friday, hours after an appeals court temporarily reinstated that law.

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11 a.m.

Judges are hearing more arguments about North Carolina Republican lawmakers’ efforts to reduce Democratic Gov. Roy Cooper’s authority in choosing his Cabinet.

A three-judge panel scheduled arguments Friday on whether to extend their recent temporary block of a law requiring Senate confirmation of Cooper’s Cabinet secretaries.

The GOP-controlled legislature passed the law shortly before Cooper took office, one of several provisions designed to limit Cooper’s powers.

Cooper’s attorneys say confirmation usurps his authority to carry out core executive functions. Republicans respond that the state Constitution gives senators “advice and consent” powers with gubernatorial appointees.

The governor wants the law blocked at least until a hearing scheduled for March.

In another gubernatorial power issue, a state appeals court on Thursday temporarily reinstated a law stripping Cooper of his oversight of elections.


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