N&O: Lawmaker’s mistaken vote puts state on path toward fracking

RALEIGH — The look on her face said it all.

Charlotte Democrat Becky Carney stood on the House floor with her mouth agape late Monday night. She looked horrified. Embarrassed. Sick to her stomach.

Moments earlier, she cast the deciding vote to override Gov. Bev Perdue’s veto on a bill to advance natural gas exploration. The problem? She opposed the bill. Voted against it days earlier. And now she made it law.

Yes, the state of North Carolina approved fracking, one of the most controversial pieces of legislation this year, by accident.

The 10-year veteran lawmaker hit the wrong button on her desk. Carney punched the thumbnail-sized green button that says “AYE” just above the red one that says “NO.”

“Oh, my God,” she said on the floor. “It won’t let me change my vote.”

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