The Pat McCrory Toe-Stepping Quote Generator

Our governor's most overused rhetorical crutch, and why it just won't die


Pat McCrory, habitual toe stepper.

Hal Goodtree via Flickr

One of the most astonishing things about the modern media landscape is the ability to find out, rather rapidly, whether someone is saying the exact same thing in separate interviews with several media outlets. And so it was with that in mind that I did some research after reading a Washington Post story about the challenges North Carolina Mayor-Governor Pat McCrory is facing from his own party, namely Republicans in the state senate. This caught my eye (emphasis mine):

“We’re stepping on the toes of a lot of the establishment that’s been controlling this state government for a long, long time, on both the left and the right,” McCrory said in an interview on Thursday in his office in the historic state capitol building. “I’m really an outsider coming in here, and a lot of the political insiders, the lobbying insiders, are pretty well established.”

McCrory goes on to say that he once called Michael Jordan for traveling in an ACC all-star game.

But the toe thing. I've heard that before. Many times. Luckily, I've created the Pat McCrory toe-stepping quote generator, made up of actual McCrory toe-stepping quotes, to help you in a pinch:

Pat McCrory "Stepping on Toes" Quote Generator
Click 'Next' to have the governor step on toes

So what's with the toes? “It certainly could be a conversational crutch," says Dr. Michael Bitzer, a political science professor at Catawba College in Salisbury (McCrory's alma mater, for what it's worth). "It is more likely that with today’s very sharp partisan polarization, you repeat repeat repeat and repeat again. Just so people know where you stand.”

We know where the governor stands. On your toes.

UPDATE (Sept. 9, 2013, 10:18 a.m.) -- And wouldn't you know it, a non-profit has gone out and actually made a TOE-STEPPING AD featuring Pat McCrory in which the governor casually recites every talking point he's got while talking to what I'm assuming are Real North Carolinians. Governor Pat: Guy You Wish You Hadn't Started A Conversation With At A Party:

McCrory says he's stepping on toes not once but twice in just one minute's time. I've added both quotes to the generator above.

Of note, the group behind the ad, the Renew North Carolina Foundation, uses the same campaign colors as McCrory. It was formed last year in Raleigh and has a lawyer from Greensboro listed as president on its most recent filing with the North Carolina Secretary of State. The owner of the website, the Stoneridge Group of Alpharetta, Ga., calls itself "the definitive resource for GOP candidates seeking innovative strategies, unique designs and an uncommon commitment to victory." It's never too early to start thinking about 2016.

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The thinly veiled musings of some guy who makes TV news, writes for Charlotte magazine and used to guide whitewater rafts here in town. Hiding behind a guise of wordiness and talkitude, wrapped in seaweed and tendered for your reading pleasure, it's writing contained only by bandwidth and a lack of free time.

About Jeremy Markovich

Jeremy Markovich writes Way Out, the back page column for Charlotte magazine. He is also a producer with NBC Charlotte. Follow him on Google+, and on Twitter at @deftlyinane.

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