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Morning Memo: 'Gov. Pay Raise', Sen. Hartsell face tough questions

GOV. PAY RAISE: The salary hikes Gov. Pay McCrory gave to his cabinet are stricking a chord. From N&O columnist Barry Saunders: If you saw our new governor live or on television banging away on a drum set with a band at Raleigh’s Lincoln Theatre last week, you already know Ringo has nothing to worry about.

For further evidence that the governor is tone deaf, all you had to do was read the newspaper the next day and see that Gov. Pat, henceforth known as Gov. Pay Raise, McCrory bestowed sizable raises on the people closest to him while sprinkling a pittance upon those outside his inner circle – you know, the ones who do the actual work.

You are reading the Dome Morning Memo, an analysis of the day's political headlines. Read much more below. Thanks.

AHEAD THIS WEEK: The UNC system committee considering a new five-year plan meets Monday. The NAACP holds is own legislative briefing -- sure to be much different from the one Republicans will hold -- Tuesday to talk about poverty and economic justice.

Another day, another super PAC ad in North Carolina

So far this year, North Carolina has seen more than 100 TV ads in the presidential race on state broadcast channels. Here's another one from the pro-Romney super PAC Restore Our Future that we missed. It hits President Barack Obama on the economy.

Thanks to Jonathan Kappler (@jonathankappler) for flagging it after seeing it Tuesday night on WRAL.

Pro-Romney super PAC airing new TV ads in North Carolina

A super PAC supporting Mitt Romney on Tuesday began airing its two new TV ads in North Carolina, a sign that Republicans still believe the state is a battleground despite talk about it being written off the map.

10 state lawmakers benefit from new business super PAC

Ten state legislators will benefit from a $321,600 advertising campaign planned by a new super PAC backed by business-interest money.

The Carolina Business Coalition Education Fund in a June 4 report filed with the state Board of Elections said it had received $350,000 in May from the Carolina Business Coalition, whose board membership includes executives from Dole Foods, Reynolds American, a former BB&T executive, a former GlaxoWellcome CEO and the textile company Glen Raven Inc. Former Gov. Jim Martin is also on the board.

The new independent expenditure committee indicated it had spent $321,660 on the 10 incumbent members of the General Assembly, all but one of whom are Republicans. The amounts to each candidate range from $2,754 (to the sole Democrat, Sen. Michael Walters of Hoke and Robeson counties) up to $61,128 for Sen. Neal Hunt of Raleigh.

Other Triangle lawmakers who benefited include Rep. Tom Murry of Morrisville ($44,415) and Rep. Mike Stone of Sanford ($7,164). In the $45,000-range were Rep. Bryan Holloway of King, Sen. Jim Davis of Franklin, and Rep. Tim Moffitt of Asheville.

So-called super PACs can raise and spend unlimited money to help elect or defeat candidates, so long as they don’t coordinate their efforts with candidates’ campaigns. This new super PAC was first reported on by BlueNC.com, a liberal website.

New super PAC joins NC Supreme Court campaign

A new super PAC has joined the race for N.C. Supreme Court Associate Justice Paul M. Newby's seat, supporing the incumbent over appeals court Judge Sam Ervin IV. (Yes, that Sam Ervin -- well, his grandson.) Read about it here.

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