Tuesday, February 20, 2007

Jim Black has another plea bargain and after the latest you would think he made that plea bargain in a bathroom. Testimony shows Black made a deal in an IHOP bathroom with former Representative Michael Decker to keep Black in power. This comes less than a week after Black pleaded guilty in federal court for making deals in bathrooms with chiropractors for cash. Below is several releases from a number of people responding to Black's latest court appearance.

"I am pleased Speaker Black has moved closer to accepting responsibility for his crimes. The people of North Carolina entrusted Speaker Black with responsibility and power. In return, Speaker Black prostituted his office. Speaker Black's crimes debase the essential fabric of democracy, which is the people's trust of elected officials. Speaker Black has the opportunity to come clean and cooperate with federal and state investigations."
--U.S. Attorney George E.B. Holding

“These crimes uncovered by our agents threaten the core of our democracy, so state leaders must work to restore public trust. Our investigation uncovered wrongdoing, but part of working to restore public trust is giving investigators and prosecutors better ways to get at the truth. State prosecutors should be able to convene an investigative grand jury, and SBI agents should be able to charge witnesses who lie deliberately. Better tools to root out wrongdoers will help ensure open and honest government.”--North Carolina Attorney General Roy Cooper

RALEIGH - The executive director and the board president of the North Carolina Chiropractic Association (NCCA) today each issued statements relating to former NC House Speaker Jim Black's guilty plea to accepting cash from three chiropractors while pushing legislation they supported.
"While the NCCA has not engaged in any illegal activity nor been accused of any illegal or unethical conduct, we believe that the alleged misconduct of a few chiropractors is raising questions about our profession and association," said Tom Schoenvogel, executive director of NCCA. "For the record, the NCCA was shocked to learn of these allegations and was in no way involved in and certainly did not endorse or encourage any alleged fund-raising misconduct among our members in an effort to sway legislation."
Schoenvogel added that the purported misconduct of a few in the profession should not reflect on the 1,000 plus chiropractic physicians providing invaluable healthcare for consumers across North Carolina. "One of the key missions of the NCCA is to promote high ethical standards," he said, noting that the organization has a process in place to address questionable ethical activities by any of its members.
As with all Political Action Committees (PAC), activities of the Chiropractic PAC are regulated by the North Carolina Board of Elections. Schoenvogel noted that the Chiropractic PAC is and has always been in good standing. The CPAC has never made any cash donations to elected officials or candidates, and its donations and activities are a matter of public record.
At stake for consumers is whether or not the 2005 law prohibiting higher insurance co-pays for chiropractic care will be allowed to stand. Dr. R. Todd Shaver, NCCA board president from Wilmington, noted that the legislation was developed with consumer needs in mind. "Healthcare consumers who choose to utilize chiropractic services should not have to pay a penalty to see a chiropractic physician rather than a medical physician," he said. "And consumers are the ones who will lose if recent talk to repeal the law becomes a reality."
(RALEIGH) – Linda Daves, Chairman of the North Carolina Republican Party, expressed disbelief and regret that Governor Easley’s “State of the State” address to the people of North Carolina failed to explain or even acknowledge the unprecedented corruption that plagued his tenure as Governor.

“Governor Easley’s vague comments during his “State of the State” address about ethics reform in the General Assembly was an insult to the integrity of hard working North Carolinians. Since he has been Governor we have watched over the years a parade of Democrat leaders being convicted and sent to jail for violating the public trust. Where was Governor Easley during this time? North Carolinians need answers­­--not platitudes--that honestly address and acknowledge the corruption and failure of his own Democrat party to prevent or correct the flagrant corruption within its ranks.”

“Governor Easley nor the Democrat Party can ignore their failure of leadership or inability to police their own members. North Carolina’s citizens deserve honest elected officials that value and protect the integrity of our system of government and take the public trust seriously.”

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