It's a common practice for state officials to use the privileges of their offices to promote themselves and their ambitions. We've seen plenty of it on both sides of the aisle over the past couple of years, but that doesn't make it right. Yet no matter how much of that shady behavior you've witnessed in the past, there's something about the way Less Merit does it that will rankle even the most cynical soul.
The Dome has the story, which broke as a result of Leslie launching a new website to tell North Carolina citizens that he's (cough, cough) doing his job of tracking down fraud, waste and abuse.
The problem with Leslie's approach is that it doesn't even begin to pass the smell test of having an arm's length distance from his political ambitions. Specifically, the new site includes a freakin' BIOGRAPHY of the two-faced watchdog himself - and it reads like a campaign commercial with an open HTML tag!
Les, a native and lifelong resident of North Carolina, was born & raised on a farm in rural Sampson County. He went on to attend North Carolina State University, earning degrees in both Economics and Accounting. Les is a Certified Public Accountant (CPA) and Certified Financial Planner (CFP). Prior to being elected State Auditor, he served as president of Merritt, Petway, Mills & Hockaday, an accounting and auditing firm with offices in Zebulon and Raleigh.
Les and his wife, Cheryl, live in the Town of Zebulon in eastern Wake County. He has served as president of the Zebulon Elementary School PTA, the Zebulon Rotary Club and the Zebulon Lions Club and as a director with the Zebulon Chamber of Commerce. Les and Cheryl Merritt are members of Zebulon Baptist Church and have two adult children, Dale and Brooke.