North Carolina Dems slam 'keep our state straight' comment

The North Carolina Democratic Party criticized comments made by a Republican state senator urging people to "fight to keep our state straight."

"Go home, tell your friends and family who had to work today what this is all about and how hard we must fight to keep our state straight," state Sen. Buck Newton (R) said Monday, according to The Associated Press.

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Newton, the state's Republican nominee for attorney general, was speaking at a demonstration in support of the state's new law that requires transgender people to use bathrooms designated for the biological sex listed on their birth certificate. The law also restricts cities from passing nondiscrimination laws more broadly.

The state's Democratic Party on Tuesday called Newton's comments hateful and discriminatory toward the LGBT community and called on him to apologize. It also urged Gov. Pat McCrory (R) to denounce Newton's comments.

On Monday, North Carolina House Democrats filed legislation to repeal the law, while dozens were arrested for demonstrations both supporting and opposing the law.

Senate leader Phil Berger (R) said he doesn't know if the protests will "change anybody's mind."

"I certainly would prefer that we not have this sort of protest,” he said. “But you know, people have a right to express their opinion if they’re upset about something we’ve done or disagree with something we’ve done.”

The controversial bathroom law has recently been talked about on the campaign trail, with Republican presidential candidate Ted CruzRafael (Ted) Edward CruzTrump looms over Senate's anti-Asian hate crimes battle Republicans who backed Trump impeachment see fundraising boost US has seen 45 mass shootings in the past month MORE criticizing rival Donald TrumpDonald TrumpGraham: 'I could not disagree more' with Trump support of Afghanistan troop withdrawal GOP believes Democrats handing them winning 2022 campaign Former GOP operative installed as NSA top lawyer resigns MORE for saying the state is paying a "big price" for the law and noting that transgender people should use whatever bathroom they want.

Cruz slammed the front-runner for being "politically correct," saying the law is necessary to protect children from predators.