There's also the fired-up Republican base that turned out Tuesday to approve the constitutional ban on gay marriage. The vote prompted more than 28,000 people to sign an online petition — by the New York-based Gay Marriage USA — to move the convention from Charlotte. Twitter also was flooded with similar sentiment from angry supporters of same-sex marriage. Obama stated his support for gay marriage a day after the vote.
Democrats want to include gay marriage in the platform to be adopted at the convention. That could create controversy at a gathering that's intended to promote party unity by drawing attention to a divisive social issue when the economy remains the most pressing concern.
What's more, the state Democratic Party is in disarray.
With sagging poll numbers, Perdue announced in January that she would not seek a second term. Her decision came on the heels of bruising budget battles with the GOP-controlled Legislature. Republicans in 2010 captured the Legislature for the first time in 140 years.
Then there's the sex scandal roiling the state party.
State Party Chairman David Parker has refused to resign — although he has said he won't seek re-election — despite pressure to step down from Perdue and other Democrats who say his presence leading the party has become a distraction. Sexual harassment allegations against executive director Jay Parmley by a former party employee have siphoned off all the political air in North Carolina.
The turmoil is churning just as Democrats accelerate preparations for the convention.
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