CEO of Duke Energy Blasts NC’s Amendment 1

This is unexpectedly hard-hitting opposition to NC’s Amendment 1 from the CEO of a Fortune 500 company. Duke Energy is an energy company — and it isn’t known for being liberal:

Duke Energy CEO Jim Rogers was the keynote speaker at a business breakfast this morning. He opened it up for questions and I asked him for his take on the marriage amendment on the May 8 ballot.

Rogers hesitated, but then couldn’t stop himself from telling the crowd of 200 or so how he felt.

If North Carolinians put the gay marriage ban into the state constitution, Rogers said, “You’re sending a message to the world that we’re not inclusive.”

Rogers emphasized that he was sharing his personal view and was not speaking on behalf of Duke Energy. He said “I believe we’re all children of God,” and that it’s wrong to pass measures that discriminate against individuals.

“If this passes, we’re going to look back 20 years from now, or 10 years, and think of it like Jim Crow laws” that discriminated against African-Americans. North Carolina is competing with the world for business, he said, and “we have to be inclusive and open.”

This story is causing a real buzz today in NC — and it should.

There is enormous momentum in North Carolina to defeat Amendment 1. If our side has the resources, we can change the course of history.

If our side doesn’t come up with the resources, shame on us. Seriously.

Now would be a really good time for the DNC to finally pony up and deliver on the promise of resources in these kinds of battles. And, I want to start hearing that OFA-NC is using its massive operation to help us win, too. (Won’t make up for not doing the Executive Order, but it would be a start.) Early voting starts April 19.

Check out the website for the campaign to defeat Amendment 1, Protect All NC Families, here. You can still donate here.


On October 27, 2010, Joe was one of five bloggers who interviewed President Obama. Joe is a DC-based political consultant with over twenty-five years of experience at both the state and federal level. Joe has managed political operations and legislative efforts for both candidates and issues-based organizations. For seven years, he was the Director of State Legislation at Handgun Control, Inc. He served as that organization's first Political Director during the 2000 cycle. Joe is a graduate of the University of Maine School of Law. In addition, he has a Masters in Public Administration from Lehigh University and received his B.A. from the University of New Hampshire. Joe also has a fun dog, Petey, a worthy successor to Boomer, who got Joe through eight years of Bush and Cheney. Joe likes to think he is a world class athlete having finished the 2005 Chicago Marathon in the time of 4:10. He has completed six other marathons as well -- and is still determined to break the four hour mark.

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