If it was a joke, North Carolina Democratic Governor Bev Perdue needs to polish her delivery.
Newly released audio contradicts the claims of Perdue’s press team that her call Tuesday for suspending Congressional elections was a joke or hyperbole. In the recording, her tone is matter-of-fact and her comments are part of a serious speech.
“Listen to the Governor’s words: She wasn’t joking at all,” North Carolina GOP spokesman Rob Lockwood told The Daily Caller. “The congressional Democrats are wildly unpopular in North Carolina, so she may have been trying to invent a solution to save their jobs from public accountability.”
“If it was a joke, what was the set-up?,” Lockwood adds. “What was the punch-line? Where was the pause for laughter? It took them three hours to say it was a ‘joke,’ but when that flopped it became ‘hyperbole.’ We’ll just call it an unconstitutionally bad idea.”
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Perdue faced almost instant national criticism on Tuesday after she recommended suspending elections until the economy recovers.
“I think we ought to suspend, perhaps, elections for Congress for two years and just tell them we won’t hold it against them, whatever decisions they make, to just let them help this country recover,” Perdue said at a rotary club event in Cary, N.C., according to the Raleigh News & Observer. “I really hope that someone can agree with me on that.”
Shortly after the controversial comments made national headlines, Perdue’s press team began claiming it was a joke. Until the audio of her comments was released, though, there was no way to know if she was serious.
Perdue spokeswoman Chris Mackey, who originally told TheDC that it was a joke and “hyperbole,” told TheDC the Governor and her press team are sticking to their statement, even after this new audio came out.
This story was updated to include a comment from Gov. Perdue’s spokesperson.