State News

Outside group pays for ads targeting McCrory

Posted August 1, 2008

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— A independent political group which is behind ads targeting Republican gubernatorial candidate Pat McCrory has raised money from the Democratic Governors Association and a national education group.

The Alliance for North Carolina, a so-called 527 group, on Friday filed a report detailing its funding sources with the State Board of Elections. The filing is required by law.

The document shows the Alliance has raised $250,000 from the political action committee of the National Education Association and  $500,000 from the Democratic Governors Association.

"We are 100 percent compliant with all of the laws that we fall under," said Scott Falmlen, a Democratic political consultant and a spokesman for the group.

The Alliance for North Carolina paid Falmlen's firm, Nexus Strategies, $10,000 for consulting services, according to the filing.

On Thursday, television stations began running an ad questioning McCrory's economic policies and stating that he supports pay raises for politicians, including himself.

McCrory's campaign denounced the ad as largely false and asked TV stations to stop running the ad. WRAL-TV has declined the request.

In a letter to TV stations, the campaign said elements in the ad are either false or made in disregard of the truth. The letter said the campaign wants stations to stop running the ad so the campaign doesn't have to take the issue to court.

"It's a negative attack, and it's not truthful," campaign consultant Jack Hawke said. "Nobody in the world would deny that that is an ad to hurt Pat McCrory and elect Bev Perdue."

Lt. Gov. Beverly Perdue is the Democratic nominee for governor.

"If she thought it was bad, if she wanted to be positive, she'd step out and say, 'Hey, I don't like this. Let's stop it,'" Hawke said.

"We don't like this activity, but if it's going to happen, let's stay focused on issue differences," said David Kochman, a spokesman for Perdue's campaign.

The State Board of Elections has fielded complaints related to political groups from both sides of the governor's race questioning whether contributions and financial reporting are legal. No hearings have been scheduled yet for the complaints.

Bob Hall, executive director of the campaign finance watchdog group Democracy North Carolina, said voters need to watch who's paying for such ads and why.

"You need to read between the lines and see what they're doing," Hall said. "They're trying to buy an outcome, and it's up to us to protect it. The outcome is our outcome, not theirs."

5 Comments

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  • angora2 Aug 1, 2008

    Politics is a JOKE, guys. It's nothing but a big finger-pointing game and one side is no more innocent than the other. If we'd all just make fun of both sides, maybe they'd cease and desist. By reacting in a knee-jerk manner to these ads (and you know we do -- read the comments), we let the politicians know we have no LOGIC left, so they continue to push buttons using campaign money. Think about this next time you see an ad that pushes one of your buttons. Remove the buttons and look at them from outside.

  • whatelseisnew Aug 1, 2008

    The governor's race is pretty simple. If you want another four years of Mike Easley, then vote for Perdue. If you want higher and higher taxes, with continuing deteriorating services, then vote for Perdue.

    If you want something different, then vote for McCory.

  • todd23 Aug 1, 2008

    You know, I seem to remember awhile back an ad an outside Republican group had, which pointed out the NC Democrat leaders who endorsed Obama who at the time was taking heat for his associations (Rev. Wright and friends). WRAL refused to run that ad but doesn't seem to mind running a factually incorrect one focused on a Republican. Sounds like pure censorship to me.

    If I also remember, McCain came down hard on the group who ran the ad. Purdue, we're waiting for you to do the same now...

  • fireman1963 Aug 1, 2008

    republican sneed to take off the kid gloves and come out fighting now. GOP candidates around the country are playing nice while behind their backs organizations like this are pulling surprize attack ads.

    So much for perdue's clean and honest campaign. If she can't tell the truth and be a woman of her word, we can't trust her to be an honest governor.

  • gammasandi Aug 1, 2008

    so much for Perdue's "let's play nice"-be sure that whatever is promised from one hand of government is being taken by the other hand from your pockets-go get 'em Patrick!