The Charlotte Observer (free subscription required) reminds us this week that North Carolina's 8th District Congressman Robin Hayes is bought and paid for.
Running for governor in 1996, Hayes trailed Democrat Jim Hunt in the polls and in dollars. So he visited his friend John Georgius, then-vice chairman of First Union Corp., now Wachovia. A few months later, Hayes recalled asking him for "a pretty heavy-duty" contribution to the Republican National Committee. Georgius complied.The bank gave the RNC $99,000. The same day, a Concord company gave $12,000 at the request of Hayes' campaign.
Two weeks later the RNC gave the total amount to the state GOP. The same day, the state party gave the amount to Hayes.
Then-Democratic Attorney General -- now Gov. -- Mike Easley said "average folks would see it as clear (money) laundering." Hayes said at the time the corporate and party contributions were not connected.