As the super PAC supporting incumbent N.C. Supreme Court Justice Paul Newby begins buying TV commercials around the state, challenger Judge Sam “Jimmy” Ervin IV has responded with an ad critical of the unrestricted spending.
“The North Carolina Supreme Court should not be for sale,” Ervin says in the ad. “But so-called independent groups are spending thousands to buy a seat on the state’s highest court. Why are they spending all this money? What do they expect in return?”
(Update: The super PAC spent another $52,525 today at WRAL, bringing the total statewide to more than $440,000 at nine TV stations.) The ads were purchased by the N.C. Judicial Coalition, a super PAC comprised of several prominent conservatives in North Carolina, including wealthy businessman Bob Luddy.
In addition, Civitas Action has spent $72,000 on behalf of Newby. Although Supreme Court justices are elected to nonpartisan positions, Newby is favored by these conservative groups and the state Republican Party; Ervin by the Democrats. Both have received bipartisan support.
The independent expenditures plus the candidates' own campaign receipts have already pushed the race to nearly $1.2 million spent.