The rumor mill reports today that Bob Luddy and Tom Fetzer are planning to renew their lease on a North Carolina Supreme Court seat, throwing their corporate cash to incumbent Paul Newby to fend off Democratic challenger over Sam "Jimmy" Ervin. Judging from Art Pope's experience with former justice Bob Orr, Luddy and Fetzer have to think it's a good investment.
This latest Republican money-laundering scheme seems to have been kicked off a couple of weeks ago, with Amy Ballantine Ellis (Patrick Ballantine's sister?) as treasurer. The N&O is apparently working the story.
Womble Carlyle had this to say about the race in February.
Although the races are officially nonpartisan, the Supreme Court is currently comprised of 4 Republicans (Martin, Edmunds, Newby, and Jackson) and three Democrats (Chief Justice Parker, Timmons-Goodson, and Hudson). If Ervin were to defeat Newby, it would tilt the balance of the court to a majority of Democrats.
It's the perfect storm we wrote about in January.
- Art Pope's corporate coffers helped Republicans buy control of both the North Carolina House and Senate.
- Pat McCrory has an ATM machine funded by special interests.
- Fetzer and Luddy are funding Paul Newby's reelection campaign
Money may not be able to buy you love, but it can sure buy a boatload of special interest influence.