NC-Sen: NC Policy Watch, “COVID-19 proves that Thom Tillis was wrong about rules for public health”

From Dean M. Harris at NC Policy Watch:

In 2015, U.S. Senator Thom Tillis of North Carolina argued that we don’t need government rules for public health in the food service industry, because the free market would protect public health and safety. As an example, he said that the government should not require Starbucks to make their employees wash their hands after they use the restroom and before they handle our food and drinks.

Tillis stated “I don’t have any problem with Starbucks if they choose to opt out of this policy as long as they post a sign that says we don’t require our employees to wash their hands after leaving the restroom. The market will take care of that.” A short video of his statement on February 3, 2015 is still available online from the Washington Post.

Tillis’ approach was based on the belief that sellers of food and beverages would still maintain high standards of health and safety, even without government rules. Supposedly, their customers would still demand high standards, and the sellers would not want to lose their customers. It was an interesting theory. However, the COVID-19 pandemic has now proven beyond any shadow of doubt that Tillis was wrong.

He’s also really regretting saying this:

Two state nonprofits joined a chorus of voices that took N.C. Senator Thom Tillis to task after he blamed the disproportionate spread of the coronavirus across the state on Latinos for not wearing face masks and improperly social distancing.

Calling Tillis’s claims “misinformation,” Piedmont Rising and Poder NC said in a press call Thursday that the senator’s comments were racist and demanded an apology from the Republican incumbent, who is trailing Democrat challenger Cal Cunningham by more than four points, according to Real Clear Politics.

At a virtual town hall on July 14, Tillis claimed that the state’s Hispanic and Latino members are less likely to wear masks and social distance and are to blame for the spread of the coronavirus in North Carolina. Journalists with Salon obtained a recording of Tillis’s remarks the next day.

And the numbers still aren’t looking good for Tillis but are holding up for Cal Cunningham (D. NC):

Cunningham has 47.3% support to Tillis's 44.2%, while 6.1% of respondents remain undecided, a new Cardinal Point Analytics poll released Tuesday found.

Cunningham's lead technically disappears if Cardinal Point Analytics' margin of error of plus or minus 4.2 percentage points is taken into account. But the tight contest augurs well for Senate Democrats hoping to flip the balance of power in the chamber on Nov. 3. Democrats only need to gain three or four seats, if they hold onto Alabama.

Cunningham, a former state senator, is ahead of Tillis, who previously served as North Carolina's House speaker before being elected to the Senate in 2014, by an average of 4.2 points, according to RealClearPolitics.

Let’s keep up the momentum and flip North Carolina Blue. Click below to donate and get involved with Cunningham, Biden, Cooper and their fellow North Carolina Democrats campaigns:

Cal Cunningham

Joe Biden for President

Roy Cooper For Governor

Yvonne Lewis Holley for Lt. Governor

Josh Stein for Attorney General

Elaine Marshall for Secretary of State

Deborah Ross for Congress

Kathy Manning for Congress

Moe Davis for Congress