Local Politics

Lawmakers: Black's Possible Resignation, Plea 'Sad Day'

Posted February 14, 2007

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— Reports that former House Speaker Jim Black is poised to resign his legislative seat and plead guilty to a federal corruption charge had the General Assembly buzzing Wednesday.

Black's lawyer told The Charlotte Observer that the veteran lawmaker would plead guilty Thursday to one count of accepting illegal gratuities. The felony charge carries a maximum sentence of 10 years in prison and a $250,000 fine.

Because state law bans felons from holding office, Black, D-Mecklenburg, would have to resign his 100th District seat in the House before pleading guilty.

"We've all talked about this one to death over the past six months to a year. It's just a sad closure to what should have been a stellar career," said Rep. Bill Faison, D-Orange.

"He's been a good leader for North Carolina, and I just think it's a sad day," said Rep. Joe Tolson, D-Edgecombe.

"With this black mark on our institution, what do we do to change to fix things to restore public confidence and make sure nothing like this happens again," said Rep. John Blust, R-Guilford.

Black, 71, held the House speakership for a record eight years.

If he resigns, the executive committee of the Mecklenburg County Democratic Party would meet to name a replacement. Gov. Mike Easley would then officially appoint that person to fill the rest of Black's two-year term.
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  • newport31259 Feb 14, 2007

    LOL...Bogus charges, huh? If I recall, the Republican congress changed Ethics rules in order to facilitate Delay's trangression, only to reverse course when the outcry got to loud. An innocent man doesn't resign.

  • victorywon Feb 14, 2007

    Get off the Democrats vs Republican as all of the parties are made up of Sin Born Humans. VOTE for the best person to do the job and not the party affiliation.. Black fell as his political predecessors Democrat & Republicans and he will have to serve his Golden Years behind bars...

  • homeimprovement Feb 14, 2007

    Yup Luke. Tom Delay was indicted on bogus charges by a partisan DA...Anybody remember a local Democrat DA using their position for political purposes?

  • virgomisty22 Feb 14, 2007

    I dont see anyone applauding BUSH. I guess he is a saint right. Get a grip this is not about which side its the person who does this to them self. ~Misty

  • TechRescue Feb 14, 2007

    Tom Delay resigned due to charges, which he's fighting. Jim doesn't seem to have much fight in him. I think he's getting off easy: video poker, bribes, gratuities, fund misuse - Somebody gave him a sweet deal to avoid the publicity. I wonder what strings he pulled to get his #1 project - the lottery?

    Anyone else notice that all of the corrupt NC politicians listed in the N&O today are dems?

  • doinbizzness Feb 14, 2007

    I AM SO TIRED OF HEARING ABOUT CROOKED POLITICIANS.....WE ELECT THEM AND TRUST THEM TO DO A JOB...THEY ARE WELL COMPENSATED AND CONTINUE TO BE GREEDY.. WE SHOULD MAKE AN EXAMPLE OUT OF MR. BLACK AND THE REST OF THE MONEY HUNGRY POLITICIANS THAT TAKE BRIBES AND "SPECIAL FAVORS" AND TO THINK WE WANT OTHERS AROUND THE WORLD "IRAQ" TO HAVE A SYSTEM LIKE OUR OWN.....MR. BLACK YOU ARE A DISGRACE BUT YOU CERTAINLY HAVE A SUPPORT GROUP OF PEOPLE THAT HAVE BEEN THROUGH THE SAME THING. THANKS FOR YOUR LIES, THANKS FOR MONEY YOU HAVE COST OUR STATE IN INVESTIGATIONS..YOU ARE A LOSER

  • HARDWRKR Feb 14, 2007

    I just saw one of our Representatives on the WRAL noon news state that Mr. Black has done so much for North Carolina. B.S. - He spent my tax money like it was water and begged for more from every deep pocket he could find regardless of what he had to do to get it. When are we taxpayers going to ever demand better government than what we get? Looks like from some of the people that post here that they are happy like it is. Guess you still get what you vote for (or pay for).

  • C6-YA Feb 14, 2007

    All these Dems make me want to puke!

  • newport31259 Feb 14, 2007

    Very much the way Republicans cheered Tom Delay when he was forced to resign for illegalities. No party is immune to this stuff.

  • homeimprovement Feb 14, 2007

    Democrats are standing up and applauding Black. No surprizes here.