Tuesday News: Heroes and villains


UNC STUDENTS EXPRESS CONCERNS ABOUT CAMPUS POLICE: History graduate student Mark Porlides talked about his arrest during a protest last year, and showed a video clip of his arrest taken by an officer’s body camera. Porlides said officers said there was no video of his being tackled and handcuffed as he stood watching the protest, but that his attorney was able to subpoena the video, which he said showed their account of the incident was incorrect. The charges were subsequently dismissed. Ayling said she has been the target of a number of death threats online. She was one of two people named in threatening language vandals scrawled on UNC’s Unsung Founders Memorial and an outdoor art exhibit on campus on the morning of March 31, she said. Two people UNC has said are members of the Heirs to the Confederacy group have been charged in the vandalism and ordered not to return to campus. Also this month, anti-Semitic posters were left on tables and bookshelves in UNC’s Davis Library.

VR SYSTEMS CONTINUES TO DENY THEY WERE HACKED BY RUSSIANS: A vendor that supplies electronic pollbook software for more than a dozen North Carolina counties is disputing "misleading insinuations" by state elections officials about whether it's the company named in the Mueller report as the victim of a 2016 Russian hacking operation. The statements from the Florida-based VR Systems come just days after the State Board of Elections sent the firm a letter requesting "immediate written assurance" regarding the security of its network. VR Systems supplies e-pollbook software called EViD to 17 North Carolina counties for use on Election Day. Special Counsel Robert Mueller wrote that in August 2016, officers with Russia's military intelligence agency targeted a "a voting technology company that developed software used by numerous U.S. counties to manage voter rolls, and installed malware on the company network." The name of the company was redacted. But elections officials noted that an unnamed elections vendor was also referenced in a 2017 indictment of 12 Russian nationals, and that VR Systems was specifically identified as a target of Russian intelligence in a report leaked to The Intercept in 2017.

GEN-X CHEMICALS FOUND IN THE BLOOD OF WILMINGTON RESIDENTS: Researchers have detected chemical byproducts related to an emerging contaminant known as GenX in Wilmington residents. For decades, GenX was an industrial chemical byproduct. It's also used to make Teflon, the stuff that makes cooking pans non-stick. Since the 1980s, the Chemours chemical plant in Fayetteville has been discharging GenX into the Cape Fear River. Dr. Jane Hoppin is an environmental epidemiologist at North Carolina State University. She said when the community in Wilmington became aware of the chemical in the Cape Fear River during the summer of 2017, everyone wanted answers. Hoppin and her colleagues collected blood and urine samples from nearly 350 Wilmington residents, and found chemical byproducts linked to GenX in nearly everyone sampled. "So we found four new chemicals in the blood of almost everybody. And we quantified three of them. Three are all chemical byproducts,” Hoppin said. “We also measured some of the other chemicals that have been active ingredients or legacy chemicals and we reported on those as well."

DAN FOREST FORCED TO AMEND REPORT THAT LEFT OUT GREG LINDBERG FUNDRAISER: Campaign finance reports show multiple financial ties between North Carolina’s lieutenant governor and Greg Lindberg, a political donor recently indicted on conspiracy and bribery charges. But, at least until recently, those financial reports didn’t show all of their ties. The campaign for Lt. Gov. Dan Forest, a Republican who plans to run for governor in 2020, told The News & Observer that it failed to report what is known as an in-kind contribution from Lindberg in 2017. That is generally required for a contribution of something other than money. The acknowledgment comes less than a month after The N&O reported that Lindberg hosted an event for Forest in August 2017 and that campaign finance reports found no mention of an in-kind donation associated with Lindberg’s property. In a Facebook photo reported on by the N&O, Forest can be seen speaking at Lindberg’s Durham residence in front of a group of people, some of whom are holding drinks.

BIG SURPRISE, TRUMP NOMINEE FOR SEAT ON THE FED IS A MISOGYNISTIC JERK: Mr. Moore has called the writings jokes, but the criticism suggests that questions of harassment and sexism could prove more consequential for Mr. Trump’s nominees than interest rates and other policy issues. In his columns, published in the early 2000s by the conservative magazine National Review, some of which were first reported by CNN, he complained that women are “sooo malleable” because his wife at the time voted for a Democrat, based on a campaign commercial. In other pieces, Mr. Moore said that female tennis players “want equal pay for inferior work” and called it a “travesty” that women wanted to play pickup basketball with men. He called for women to be banned from the N.C.A.A. men’s basketball tournament, unless they were as attractive as the CBS sports journalist Bonnie Bernstein, who, he wrote, “should wear a halter top.” He lamented: “Is there no area in life where men can take vacation from women? What’s next? Women invited to bachelor parties?”