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Black Confirms Using Campaign Funding To Pay Legal Bills

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RALEIGH, N.C. — It appears that House Speaker Jim Black's hefty campaign fund won't all be going toward his re-election campaign.

Heading into the election year, Black had about $1 million in his campaign account, but WRAL confirmed Thursday there is circulation through the North Carolina Democratic Party that members are being asked to contribute to the speaker's campaign.

Black, who has been linked to several people charged or convicted in a vast public corruption investigation, said in a statement released Thursday that some of the money has gone toward his mounting legal bills.

"Despite raising and spending close to $1 million on my campaign and legal bills during the last year, I'm still going to out work my opponent, remain focused on the real issues like improving education, and do what it takes to win re-election on Nov. 7," Black said in a statement released Thursday afternoon. "And, I'm going to continue to defend myself and set the record straight regarding the untrue allegations that have been directed at me in recent months."

According to the statement, Black's use of the campaign funds will be detailed on his upcoming campaign finance reports.

The state Democratic Party has confirmed it is helping Black, just like other candidates.

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