As part of a statewide informational campaign, Durham residents and the NC NAACP will hold a picket this afternoon near the Roses store on the corner of Highway 54 and Fayetteville Road, starting at 4 p.m.
Pope, who was appointed state budget director by Governor Pat McCrory in January, is the owner of Variety Wholesalers Incorporated, a discount retail chain that includes Roses and Maxway franchises as well as smaller discount stores in the state.
Pope is well known for his right-wing political views and has given nearly $50 million to conservative think tanks in North Carolina, including the John Locke Foundation, Americans for Prosperity and the Civitas Institute, in the last ten years. In 2012, Pope’s family contributed $16,000 to McCrory’s campaign for governor and more than $100,000 to the N.C. Republican party; additionally, Pope-affiliated groups spent nearly $500,000 on McCrory’s campaign.
Picketers will hold banners and signs and pass out information about Pope. According to a press release by left-leaning watchdog group Democracy NC, the purpose of the picket is not to encourage people to boycott Pope’s stores— which are located in 65 cities in working-class and minority neighborhoods— but to “raise awareness across North Carolina and demand that Art Pope support the request for a Special Redemption Session of the N.C. General Assembly to reverse course on two extremist policies, the denial of Medicaid and emergency unemployment benefits that will harm the most vulnerable members of our state.”
Protesters will gather in the Kroger's shopping center lot on the corner of Highway 54 and Fayetteville Road before the picket.
See the full press release here: