Response to Black's sentencing is coming in...here's a few excerpts from a few. More on my experience later in the afternoon. Still waiting for a response from the Gov.
From Speaker Hackney's office
“Jim Black was a valuable servant to this state for many years, but the sort of crimes he has admitted to can never be excused for a public official. This prison sentence sends a strong message to all of us that neither the public nor the courts will tolerate dishonesty by their elected representatives. We have already put measures in place to restore confidence in our House of Representatives. I hope we are on our way to regaining the public’s trust.”
From Republican Party Chairwoman Linda Daves
"Today is a regrettable day in the history of North Carolina. However, today is a also a day of vindication for the citizens of our state. Today, we take back our democracy and send a message to our elected officials that their job is to represent the people. The day of Democrat Jim Black’s power and “pay-to-play” tactics has come to an end.
Despite his attorney’s continued protestations in court today that Jim Black is “not a corrupt man,” we know quite differently. Mr. Black is just another example in a bitter legacy of corruption in our state government. But of fellow Democrats to face prison before him, including Meg Scott Phipps, Frank Ballance, and Kevin Geddings, Mr. Black held the most powerful position, wielded the highest amount of influence, and corrupted his office over the longest period of time. Still, Mr. Black expected to avoid prison time by offering his services as an optometrist in a free clinic. I sincerely wish that the former Speaker had his change of heart and dedicated himself to serving the people of North Carolina before he began accepting bribes from lobbyists. But Mr. Black could not serve the people of North Carolina when he was too busy selling our democracy to the highest bidder in deals conducted in public restrooms.
Our worst fears are realized when we discover that our elected representatives are pursuing money and power instead of the interests of the people whom they represent. When the breed of corruption of which Jim Black is guilty takes place, voters are tempted to lose faith in our system of government and the resulting apathy can become a cancer on our democracy. The North Carolina Republican Party is committed to the highest ethical standards in our state government. Unfortunately, again and again the Democrat leadership in the General Assembly has failed to play by the rules. We must hold accountable those legislators guilty of corrupting our democracy and we must restore honesty and integrity to our state government. We will not tolerate crooked politicians in North Carolina."