At NC’s GOP convention, governor candidate Robinson energizes Republicans 

GREENSBORO, N.C. (AP) — Before Mark Robinson, North Carolina’s GOP candidate for governor, even stepped on stage at the state party’s convention Saturday, several state candidates took time in their own speeches to energize the crowd by vouching for Robinson’s gubernatorial bid.

When the state’s lieutenant governor did take to the stage more than an hour and a half into the NCGOP Convention’s Old North State Dinner in Greensboro, Robinson started off his fiery speech denouncing the media for focusing too much on Donald Trump’s ongoing criminal and civil trials and not the “failures of the Democratic Party.”

He also shared his vision for the state, which he said centers around the improving the economy and education.

“Trust me, there are enough people in this state who are talented enough and share the vision that we have that we can make this a reality, folks,” Robinson said during his speech, which was livestreamed by television outlet WGHP.

The 55-year-old Republican is embroiled in one of the most hotly contested gubernatorial races of the 2024 election against his Democratic opponent and state Attorney General Josh Stein. Robinson’s brash political style has intrigued Trump supporters, as well as the former president himself, who formally endorsed Robinson in March at a Greensboro rally and called him “Martin Luther King on steroids.”

Robinson has also caught the attention of critics who say his rhetoric on the LGBTQ community and restricting abortion access should be a cause for concern. The Greensboro native has previously defended his past remarks by saying he can separate his religious views from public office and wants to make North Carolina a “destination state for life.”

Calling himself “part of the winning team” during his speech, Robinson credited Republican policies with the state’s economic success and stressed the role of the governor’s office — under his leadership — to preserve that success.

“North Carolina is literally on the cusp of exploding economically,” Robinson said. “It’s time for us to direct that explosion in the right way and cause this state to be something better than it already is.”

Education in North Carolina is another priority for Robinson, who said the state’s education system is “in shambles.” But the state of education isn’t at the fault of teachers, Robinson said, adding that he puts schoolteachers in the same category as police officers.

North Dakota Gov. Burgum was also a keynote speaker at Saturday’s dinner, where he started off his speech calling Robinson the state’s next governor.

He also reiterated sentiments from Republican National Committee co-chair Lara Trump and her husband, Eric Trump, who both spoke at the convention Friday, that North Carolina will be an important state in 2024 that could “determine the actual direction of our entire country.”


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