As lieutenant governor, Dan Forest is a member of numerous boards, including the State Board of Education and the North Carolina Community College Board. His office also includes serving as president of the senate, which entails presiding over sessions.
Over the course of his two terms in office as lieutenant governor, Dan Forest has routinely skipped important meetings and sessions, in some cases sending a representative who is unable to vote. The Office of Lieutenant Governor has few powers apart from being able to vote at these board meetings, yet Forest has a lackluster attendance record.
In his role as president of the senate, Forest boasts just under a 65% attendance policy between 2013 and 2018. In 2018, the most recent session for which data is available on the NCGA website, Forest only attended 29% of the 69 sessions. As president of the senate, Forest can cast tie-breaking votes.
Forest has attempted to make education a focus of his candidacy for governor, but his attendance record in matters of education over the past few years shows a different priority. As a voting member of the North Carolina Community College Board, Forest almost invariably sent a representative in his stead. The Board forbids votes by proxy, meaning that every instance where Forest sent a representative he could not vote. Over the course of 2013 to 2019, Forest only attended 14 of 90 meetings himself; effectively missing over 80 percent of the board’s meetings.
Forest also sits on the State Board of Education, a role with particular import as schools attempt to navigate reopening amidst a global pandemic. However, since the outbreak of COVID-19, Forest has skipped nearly half of the meetings and only partially attended some, hanging up before the vote was called. In lieu of attending and voting, Forest regularly opts to give interviews on conservative television and radio programs. Forest has only attended 9 of the 19 meetings since March 14th in their entirety, under one-third.
Dan Forest has a track record of doing the bare minimum and now he wants a promotion.