POSTED: 6:51 pm EDT August 26, 2006
CHARLOTTE, N.C. -- State House Speaker Jim Black's campaign paid $10,000 to the Winston-Salem law firm that represented a political ally who pleaded guilty this month to campaign finance violations, according to records reported Saturday by The Charlotte Observer.
Black's spending reports, which reflect two checks of $5,000 each sent to the firm, suggest the powerful Mecklenburg County Democrat was paying legal bills for former state Rep. Michael Decker.
"It looks bad, the fact that that money went to a law firm representing Decker," said state Sen. John Snow, D-Cherokee, who has called upon Black to resign. "Anybody would draw the inference that Black was helping take care of his legal expenses."
Black has denied offering or giving Decker anything in exchange for his support. Neither he nor David Freedman, the law firm partner who represents Decker, would comment on the checks. The newspaper could not reach Decker.
Decker pleaded guilty in federal court this month to taking $50,000 in campaign contributions and cash from an unidentified Democrat in exchange for supporting Black for speaker in 2003.
I guess Black really takes care of the people that take care of him even when they admit to breaking the law.