Blame the law when you break the law; that is what Scott Mooneyham does on behalf of Mike Easley and Jim Black in his article “A Root of Corruption” in the Capitol View, INSIDER AFTERNOON UPDATE, July 20, 2009. It is Mooneyham’s contention that there is a loophole in a campaign finance law and he thinks it should be closed. He joins Democracy North Carolina in their call for the Board of Elections to hold hearings due to “troubling patterns” of party contributions to Easley’s Campaign Committee.
In his article Mooneyham makes it clear that he does not want to blame the transgressor. He rests the blame squarely on the law. He writes “It's the law that spawns much of the political corruption in North Carolina. It's a campaign finance law that, weak as it is, foments abuse of power. The law in question allows the state's political parties to make unlimited contributions to candidates. ” He even goes on to say “Human nature is human nature, and politicians have always been and will always be susceptible to temptation.”
Wow – let’s all take a minute to “soak” up this point of view. I guess Mooneyham thinks we are wrong to expect anything resembling honesty and integrity from our elected leaders. I can’t help it, I expect so much more from someone who makes me promises and begs me for my support.
Mike Easley didn’t come straight from the backwoods to the big city to lead our State. He was a District Attorney for ten years (according to his biography, “a top drug buster”), North Carolina’s Attorney General for eight years and elected Governor twice. He knows North Carolina’s laws, he knows right from wrong; I will hold him entirely accountable, if he is found guilty.
For some reason Jim Black gets slipped into this argument for changing the state's political party’s ability to make unlimited contributions to candidates. We would have to throw away all of North Carolina's laws to cover all of Black’s transgressions; public corruption, bribery, obstructing justice, accepting kickbacks in public restrooms…
Before we ask our elected representatives to rewrite campaign finance laws, we should remember John McCain blamed the law after he was investigated in a political influence scandal in the 1980’s – does anyone remember the Keating 5? McCain then made campaign finance reform a priority and we got McCain-Feingold. Remember – the cure can kill you.