Speed Reads

Late Night Tackles 2016

Seth Meyers explains why you should care about the GOP's 'naked power grab' in North Carolina

Last week, the Republican-dominated North Carolina legislature made a pretty audacious power grab, voting to strip incoming Democratic Gov. Roy Cooper of many of the powers held by his Republican predecessor, Pat McCrory, who signed the requisite bills. On Monday's Late Night, Seth Meyers ran through what happened and why it matters, but he began by noting Donald Trump's victory in the Electoral College earlier in the day. "By the rules of our electoral system, Donald Trump won, and our democracy depends on accepting the legitimacy of our opponents and the votes of people who disagree with us," he said, "which is why what happened last week in North Carolina is so troubling."

"So the Republicans lost, and now GOP legislators are stripping powers away from the Democratic governor before he takes office," Meyers recapped. "That's like losing a bet and paying with Monopoly money." The power grab included taking away the governor's party's right to control election boards, giving Democrats control in odd years — when there are no elections — and GOP control in even years. And the reason the GOP legislature is able to do this? Gerrymandering, notably by concentrating black voters in oddly drawn districts to dilute their power, he argued.

Meyers concluded by tying the North Carolina chicanery to Christmas. "This is the time of year when we take stock of all the things we take for granted — things like living in a stable, healthy democracy," he said. "But democracy isn't something that succeeds on its own. If it's going to survive, we have to fight for it." He broke out some props to finish his thought, and you can watch his closer look below. Peter Weber