North Carolina State Senate Minority Leader Dan Blue (D-Wake) had an ethics complaint filed against him and got some support from an unlikely source state Senate President Pro Tem Phil Berger (R-Rockingham).
Blue as the Democratic leader in the state Senate and Berger as the Republican leader are usually banging heads, but politics aside evidently have a great deal of respect for each other.
Blue had an ethics complaint filed against him by NC WARN asking for an investigation into Blue’s relationship with Duke Energy. According to the complaint Blue’s law firm is suing landowners over the proposed Atlantic Coast Pipeline which will be partially owned by Duke Energy. NC WARN wants Blue investigated to see if his relationship with Duke Energy creates a conflict of interest.
In response to that ethics complaint on Thursday, May 9 Berger released the following statement:
“Special interest groups on the left have been hurling baseless accusations at Republicans for years in efforts to tarnish the reputations of good men and women for political gain. Now they’ve turned on one of their own.
“I have known Senator Dan Blue for 20 years, and he’s served this state for even longer. He is a worthy political adversary, a knowledgeable legislator, and a reasonable person. Nothing I have seen leads me to believe that Dan Blue is corrupt.
“Yesterday, an organization with a long history of reckless advocacy filed an ethics complaint against Senator Blue that tried to convict him in the court of public opinion with no evidence, no independent analysis, and not even a whiff of good-faith consideration of the facts.
“This is another example of a partisan, agenda-driven group masquerading as a ‘watchdog’ making reckless accusations to leverage political ends.
“Clearly, these organizations will turn on anyone, even their friends, at the drop of a hat.”
Next week Berger and Blue will no doubt be going after each other over the state budget, where Republicans and Democrats have considerably different ideas about how money should be raised and spent.