Raleigh, N.C. — A group backing Lt. Gov. Walter Dalton, a Democrat, says Pat McCrory's latest ad, "Feet," shows the need for the Republican gubernatorial candidate to disclose more about his business dealings.
In the ad, McCrory makes a pitch for expanding North Carolina's energy sector to tap "thousands of jobs is right under our feet and off our coast."
Progress North Carolina Action, which has been the mouthpiece for an independent expenditure group backed by the Democratic Governors Association, says McCrory has a conflict on the issue.
McCrory works as a businesses consultant for Moore & Van Allen, a law firm that works for the American Petroleum Institute.
"In less than six months, McCrory could be in a position to appoint members to the new Mining and Energy Commission that will regulate fracking. Who will he listen to for advice? Property rights advocates or Moore & Van Allen's client API?" the group says in a news release. "Pat McCrory must release his tax returns and clients list so that the voters can have the truth when they go to the voting booth," said Gerrick Brenner, the group's director.
This has been a theme that Democrats have hammered since the primaries. They have linked McCrory's refusal to release his tax returns to the national storyline of Republican presidential candidate Mitt Romney declining to release more than two years of his returns. McCrory has said he has disclosed all that he is required to under state law. Jim Morrill, a Charlotte Observer reporter, notes on his blog that talking points McCrory gave New Jersey Gov. Chris Christie for a joint appearance this week reference the tax return issue. "Pat McCrory's opponent is trying to distract from his record ... by demanding Pat release his personal income tax returns," Morrill reports the memo as saying.
Brian Nick, a spokesman for McCrory's campaign, blows off the Progress North Carolina criticism.
"Pat's had his position on the exploration for energy resources for quite a long time," Nick said, adding that McCrory takes positions based on what he think the best policies for the state might be.
"This is just a continuation of the same tired rhetoric from the other side," Nick said of the call for release of more work records.