North Carolina campaign 2012: Endorsement game gets a little quirky





The State Employees Association is sitting out the governor’s race — as is the North Carolina Chamber.   NFIB has already gone with McCrory.  What’s up with the Chamber?  Let’s see:

[…] The chamber said Tuesday it is focusing its “limited resources” on the legislature and “the most important race this fall,” the state Supreme Court.

In that race, the chamber’s PAC picked Paul Newby, a Republican seeking to retain his seat on state’s high court. It’s the first time the chamber waded into a judicial race. Newby faces Democrat Sam Ervin IV. (Find the other legislative endorsements here.) […]

What’s going on with the state employees?  Let’s see:
[…] Notably absent from the list of endorsees are candidates for governor or state treasurer. Lt. Gov. Walter Dalton, the Democratic candidate for governor, and Republican candidate Pat McCrory were interviewed and neither got the nod. Nor did SEANC make endorsements for state Insurance Commissioner, Labor Commissioner, or Agriculture Commissioner either.

There aren’t a lot of competitive contests, but SEANC-endorsed candidates are eligible for PAC donations and other assistance. In 2008, SEIU, a union associated with SEANC, contributed $1.2 million to the state Democratic Party, spent $410,000 on state races, and gave $250,000 to an independent group that ran ads attacking McCrory.

In statewide races were it did make choices this year, the PAC endorsed Democratic candidates including Linda Coleman for lieutenant governor, incumbent state Auditor Beth Wood, incumbent Superintendent for Public Instruction June Atkinson and incumbent Secretary of State Elaine Marshall.

Dana Cope, SEANC’s executive director, said the reason the PAC didn’t endorse in the governor’s race is that “neither candidate spoke to their issues, the issues they feel strongly about.” Those issues, he said, are providing “quality public services and doing it at the most efficient price point for the taxpayers.”

In the treasurer’s race, SEANC is not only unhappy over the pension system’s Facebook investment, but it has a longstanding concern about the state treasurer being the person who chooses the firms that handle pension fund investments. SEANC wants a board of trustees involved.