Coming in 2017: Announcing the Coop-O-Meter!

Roy Cooper waves to supporters on election night in Raleigh. News & Observer photo.
Roy Cooper waves to supporters on election night in Raleigh. News & Observer photo.
Coop-O-Meter: It's in the works
Coop-O-Meter: It's in the works

North Carolina finally has a winner in the governor's race, after weeks of uncertainty.

Gov. Pat McCrory conceded defeat in his reelection bid Monday, which means Roy Cooper will take office in January 2017. We plan to be busy in January, too, launching a new feature to keep track of the promises he made during his campaign to unseat McCrory.

Get ready for the Coop-O-Meter.

You're already familiar with our Truth-O-Meter, which rates claims on a scale from True to Pants On Fire. The Coop-O-Meter will use a different scale to track the progress of the promises Cooper has made.

PolitiFact began the idea at the national level with the Obameter. Since 2009 it has tracked the status of more than 500 promises made by President Barack Obama.

The national promise meter will continue, with the shiny new Trump-O-Meter also set to begin in January 2017, when Donald Trump is sworn in as president.

Just like at the presidential level, we have the same high hopes for the Coop-O-Meter to hold North Carolina's governor accountable for the promises he made.

We define a promise as a prospective statement of an action or outcome that is verifiable. We only track promises made during the campaign, and all of our promises will list the source. The Coop-O-Meter will have the same six levels as the Obameter and Trump-O-Meter, which are:

Not Yet Rated — Every promise begins at this level and retains this rating until we see evidence of progress — or evidence that the promise has stalled.

In the Works — This indicates the promise has been proposed or is being considered.

Stalled — There is no movement on the promise, perhaps because of limitations on money, opposition from lawmakers or a shift in priorities.

Compromise — Promises earn this rating when they accomplish substantially less than the official’s original statement but when there is still a significant accomplishment that is consistent with the goal of the original promise.

Promise Kept — Promises earn this rating when the original promise is mostly or completely fulfilled.

Promise Broken – The promise has not been fulfilled. This could occur because of inaction by the executive or lack of support from the legislative branch or other group that was critical for the promise to be fulfilled. A Promise Broken rating does not necessarily mean that the executive failed to advocate for the policy.

You should also know that promise ratings change whenever the circumstances change. For some promises, it's possible that the status could initially be rated In the Works, then be moved to Stalled if the proposal hits a lull, and later go back to In the Works.

We had been working on possible promise meters for both Cooper and McCrory, and now that Cooper's win is official we have identified more than 30 of his promises to track. Look for those to start being published soon.

And while we have dozens of promises to start with, surely more will come as we continue to dig through speech transcripts, interviews and TV appearances.

We'd also like your help identifying more.

Just like with any suggestions for fact-checks, please email ideas for the Coop-O-Meter to [email protected] and we will take them into consideration

And once again, thank you for reading PolitiFact North Carolina!