Monday, May 11, 2009

NCGOP: Easley Campaign Finance Violations Must Be Investigated and Punished

NCGOP Press Release
May 11, 2009

RALEIGH—In an article this weekend in the News & Observer, former Governor Mike Easley is accused of using the private planes of influential donors without reporting them on campaign finance reports. These omissions could have violated state election laws. As detailed by the News & Observer:

"Starting in 2003, Easley took at least 25 flights on private jets, some in apparent violation of campaign laws and ethics rules, documents and interviews show. Some flights were free. The value of others exceeded campaign contribution limits. …

Easley, a Democrat who left office in January, appointed some of the benefactors to boards that oversee state transportation networks, the state's largest universities and other state functions. …

Some donations to Easley were funneled through the state Democratic Party, which is not subject to contribution limits. But under state election laws, a donor cannot give to a specific candidate through a political party." ("Easley's secret flights skirted the law," News & Observer, 5/9/09)

Chairman Linda Daves, North Carolina Republican Party, made the following statement:

"I am appalled by these latest revelations about Mike Easley and his time in office. We have been told many times that the pay-to-play backroom politics have come to an end in North Carolina, however these latest revelations show that just the opposite is true. Not only do actions of this nature by those who call themselves 'public servants' destroy the public trust in our elected officials and government at large, these violations also create an elite political class insulated from the people and incapable of doing anything but ingratiating themselves at the public's expense. There is little doubt that before this latest episode concludes we will have another stain on the public trust thanks to another elected Democrat. We must be rid once and for all of these political leeches who infect the culture of state government. As a citizen of North Carolina, I hope that a thorough investigation of campaign finances directed to Mike Easley or funneled through the state Democratic Party will be expedited and appropriate punishment doled out for any violations that are discovered."