The response continues to come in regarding Jim Black. Here's an interesting letter Jerry Meek, NC Democratic Party Chair, sent to his delegation.
Raleigh--North Carolina Democratic Party Chair Jerry Meek today sent the following email message to Democrats across the state:
Dear Fellow Democrat:Just like you, I am furious. And we should be. Someone we know has betrayed us and betrayed the public trust. For almost a year, Jim Black has personally assured me and our fellow legislators that he's done nothing wrong. When the Speaker of the House looks you in the eye and tells you something, it's hard not to believe him. In the past week, Jim Black pled guilty to acts that go beyond anything that any of us anticipated. As a citizen, I'm furious that he's betrayed the public trust. But I'm even more furious that he betrayed my trust and the trust of so many Democrats who knew him.It is, therefore, with great sadness that I write you today. As bad as the earlier press reports about Jim Black were, his recent admission that he took personal bribes to influence legislation shocked us all. That's not why I'm in public service and that's not what democracy is all about. Our Party believes in the power of government to do good things -- by creating opportunity, protecting freedom, and expanding the horizon of human achievement. Whenever an official undermines the public's trust in government, he makes our Party's mission all the more difficult. And Jim Black has done lasting damage to the public's perception of government.I cannot and will not apologize for what Jim Black has done. But I will tell you that the Democratic Party remains the people's party. As Democrats, we will work hard to restore full confidence in state government. Last year's ethics reform law was a good start. But there is more that we must do.With the leadership of Speaker Hackney, Senator Basnight, and Governor Easley, we will put this dark time behind us. Now is the time to focus our energies on moving North Carolina forward.I believe in the power of average citizens to make a difference in our State and nation. I believe in our ability to create a city on a hill, leaving a legacy of prosperity and security for future generations. In the past difficult week, I've taken great solace in the fact that thousands of Democratic elected officials and local Democratic Party leaders work every day to make North Carolina flourish. One man's betrayal of trust will not dissuade any of us from continuing this work.With best wishes,
Jerry Meek, Chair