pay-to-play politics

Double the ineffectiveness: Burr helps Tillis grab DC money

Finally something Burr is qualified to do:

Burr will join Sens. Bob Corker (R-Tenn.) and John Barrasso (R-Wyo.) for the Sept. 24 fundraiser in Washington, D.C., a sign establishment Republicans are rallying around Tillis even as others get into the primary against him.

Burr's support is especially important; along with North Carolina Gov. Pat McCrory (R), he's the state's highest-profile Republican.

Which only goes to show that a profile has absolutely nothing to do with actual performance...

Blatant play-to-play politics displayed by Tillis

More fodder for his doomed US Senate campaign:

“I would estimate he is directly responsible for more than $100,000.00 in financial support through personal contributions to my campaign committee and other candidates and through the Hospitality Alliance,” Tillis wrote in a March 21 email to House leaders.

The chilling part of this is that it's apparent Thom Tillis considers campaign donations to be a perfectly legitimate reason to appoint somebody to a board or other position, as do most of his colleagues. And as to a Democrat giving such large sums to a Republican's campaign, well. With enemies like that you don't need friends.

DAG McCrory's pals pay-to-play with taxpayer dollars

Who didn't see this coming?

Gov. Pat McCrory named some high-powered individuals Monday to the North Carolina Economic Development Board that will be chaired by his long-time friend and political ally John Lassiter of Charlotte.

Lassiter, president of Carolina Legal Staffing, has been an advisor to McCrory, and is also involved in the governor's 5-1 c4 political committee.

Unless I missed it, there's not a single economist on this Economic Development Board, probably because it's not about economic development, it's about fleecing the taxpayers and "refining" the qualifications for country-club membership.

DAG McCrory: lobbying from the Governor's mansion

Now this is what I call customer service:

The Charlotte law firm Moore & Van Allen, where McCrory was employed until just days before taking office, helped the New York-based insurance company negotiate with state and local governments to receive more than $94 million in taxpayer-funded incentives in return for the promise to add more than 2,600 jobs in the next three years.

It's no wonder McCrory ran away from reporters when this "deal" was announced. But never fear, the 4th estate is on the job:

Gerrick Brenner explores McCrory's unethical connections

Creating a new paradigm in pay-to-play politics:

The Foundation for North Carolina can take unlimited donations and legally does not have to disclose its donors. Gov. McCrory’s association with such an entity designed specifically for his benefit is a gaping loophole for corporations and lobbyists to circumvent campaign finance law. The potential for pay-to-play and conflicts of interests is staggering.

After witnessing McCrory's 2011 non-campaign campaign, in which he toured the state raking in speaker's fees and God knows what other forms of income, this Foundation gimmick comes as no surprise. What is a surprise is how casually the mainstream media has approached this issue. Back in the day, tons of money from unknown sources collected for vague reasons used to be a flag for reporters that corruption might be present, but today? Nary an eyebrow raised.

Join us in Raleigh for Saturday's Pay-To-Play Pat Sidewalk Ball protest!

Rather than getting rid of the patronage system and the good ole boy network like he promised during his campaign, NC's new Governor Pat McCrory has elevated pay-to-play politics to a whole new level. See the details at

That's why a number of progressive and good government groups are pushing back by staging a rally outside one of the political fundraising events McCrory has lent his name to. Join us on Saturday, January 12 from 6 PM to 7 PM at 500 South Salisbury Street, outside an inaugural ball sponsored by the political group, the Foundation for North Carolina (F-NC). We want to send a message to the media and to the public: not everyone in North Carolina believes in pay-to-play politics! How bad is it? F-NC is currently selling memberships for $50,00 and $25,000 -- with members getting to meet with McCrory behind closed doors to discuss policy as just one membership benefit. More details, including resources you can share to help publicize the event, after the jump.

Video gambling industry wins again

And they seem to be holding all the cards:

Once again, the gaming industry is holding three aces, while the lawmakers who tried to prevent our state from being overrun with video gambling establishments has been dealt a bum hand. Two Court of Appeals judges and the gaming industry say the law is a violation of free speech.

This is turning into a bad joke. After blatantly violating state law designed to protect citizens, and then using the proceeds from said criminal behavior to buy off lawmakers like Thom Tillis, the gaming industry is turning our legal system into an embarassment.

Where's the investigation of Speaker Tillis?

As usual, Chris Fitzsimon hits the nail on the head:

Supporters of the politician involved try to brush aside questions about the sketchy reports as partisan attacks, never really explaining why the information filed with the State Board of Elections was inaccurate.

It's called situational ethics, but I don't expect the NC GOP to understand that term. And those individuals on the right who claim to be stalwart "anti-corruption" advocates, like Don Carrington and Les Merritt, have been completely silent on this blatant example of pay-to-play politics. Placing them somewhere between irrelevant and hypocritical. fumier.

Situational ethics in the McCrory camp

Money washes away all sins:

He said the 2008 situation was different because the elder Sewell was on the board and Perdue was an elected official. McCrory isn't an elected official right now and Nick added, "Billy Sewell didn't do anything wrong."

So...what are you saying? If you're not an elected official "right now", it doesn't matter where the money comes from? I guess it follows that, with McCrory's "blank slate" ethical rulebook, any future favors he does for donors have nothing to do with those contributions. As to that "didn't do anything wrong" quip, how soon we forget:

Goolsby to realtors: Would you like fries with that bill?

Rumors of the death of pay-to-play politics are grossly exaggerated:

A $4,000 donation comes in to state Sen. Thom Goolsby’s campaign from the president of the Wilmington-Cape Fear Home Builders Association in May. In early June, Goolsby rushes through the Senate a bill requested by – no surprise – the home builders group concerning the booking policy at the Wilmington Convention Center, without bothering to tell city officials about it.

Just to give you a weekend chuckle at the irony of the GOP's "say one thing and do another" approach to government, pay close attention to the first few sentences where Goolsby talks about how he'll fix corruption and specifically mentions realtors:

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