Missing ethics disclosures while election underway

A week before the North Carolina 2018 primary election day about one in six candidates had not filed state ethics disclosures required of them since a March 12th deadline. While election day is May 8th, voting has been underway since absentee ballots were first made available March 29th. Voters have been deprived of legally required ethics information in one out of three state primary contests and almost half of the NC House primaries. Continue reading

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Berger Moore judicial interference blurs ethical boundaries, separation of powers

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USCIS Citizenship Test review

Today I file a complaint with the State Ethics Commission asking for an investigation into whether NC House Speaker Tim Moore and NC Senate President Pro Tem Phil Berger have violated state ethics laws by using their leadership positions to intimidate and interfere with judges considering constitutional challenges to laws enacted by the NC General Assembly. The assault on the judiciary includes changes to judicial elections, judicial redistricting and a blunt statement of “profound consequences”.
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Ralph Hise report raises more questions

298A campaign finance report filed by the Ralph Hise for NC Senate Committee in August contains inconsistencies that compound previous discrepancies yet to be properly addressed by Hise.

The mid-year semi-annual report for the period January through June of 2017 was submitted by Ralph Hise’s newest treasurer, Amy B Ellis, CPA. Ellis took over in May after the irregularities in Hise’s campaign finances were the subject of a complaint  and follow-up by this author to the NC State Board of Elections.

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More Ralph Hise campaign finance questions

298The Ralph Hise for NC Senate Committee  has not reported a number of contributions, amounting to $9,700, that have been reported by various Political Action Committees (PACs) as having been made to the campaign committee of State Senator Ralph Hise. Also, the Hise committee reported a $1,500.00 “refund” from “University of NC” for a payment that was never recorded, making it an impermissible contribution from UNC. Today I filed an amendment to my complaint to the State Board of Elections to include these anomalies. 

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Ralph Hise campaign overpays him $10,000 in loan repayments

298State Senator Ralph Hise appears to have received over $10,000 more in loan repayments from his campaign committee than the total amount of loans he has made to the committee. Since the formation of the Ralph Hise for NC Senate Committee in 2009 campaign finance records show evidence of 17 personal loans from Ralph E Hise Jr totaling $50,694.37, and evidence of 39 loan repayments totaling $61,020.98, an excess of $10,326.61. Earlier today I filed a complaint with the State Board of Elections regarding this, and other apparent irregularities.

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Let me Googe that for you. Filling in congressional blanks.

Republican Sue Googe’s quixotic campaign to unseat Congressman David Price in an overwhelmingly Democratic 4th Congressional District has built a superficially compelling narrative but close scrutiny reveals holes clearly visible in the light of public information. “Let me Google that for you”.

Googe is registered to vote at an address in the 4th District where she does not appear to live. Congressional candidates are not required by law to live in the district they hope to represent, but it helps. Jiangxiu “Sue” Fu Googe has been a Cary resident since 2004 when she and her husband bought a 2,400 SF home in a desirable Lochmere development. It was located in the 13th District when Sue Googe filed to run in the 4th Congressional District and it is currently located in the 2nd District.  

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Shades of Gray: McCrory appointed judge, candidate contributions

According to North Carolina state campaign finance reports 17 candidate contributions have been attributed to Judge Beecher “Gus” Gray since 2008, totaling $12,046 received by 5 candidates. If the reports are correct some would seem to represent violations of the NC Judicial Code of Conduct. Canon 7 of the Code prohibits judges from personally making financial contributions or loans to almost all individuals seeking election to office.

Beecher Reynolds Gray was appointed by Governor Pat McCrory as a Special Superior Court Judge in January 2014, prior to which he had served as an Administrative Law Judge for the Office of Administrative Hearings since 1986. He was sworn in 01/09/2014 for a term ending 01/09/2019. Six of the 17 contributions have been recorded since taking office. The six campaign contributions provided $1,000 to Pat McCrory, $2,650 to Brent Jackson, and $1,000 to Phil Berger Sr. (These six contributions are specifically covered by the Judicial Code of Conduct)*.

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