Farmer, speaking at the start of a commission meeting, lambasted Merritt's inquiry into the ethics commission's dismissal of an employee over an incident involving the lawyer for Lieutenant Gov. Beverly Perdue reviewing Perdue's file, Mark Johnson reports.
Farmer charged that Merritt released a recent report on his investigation without waiting for a pending court ruling on a lawsuit filed by the commission over that same probe, with Merritt saying he is exempt from such interference.
"In other words, he is above the law," Farmer said.
He also accused Merritt of violating government accounting standards, his own duties, his own confidentiality rules and the ethics act.
"Now he thumbs his nose at a court of law," said Farmer, a former judge, "by proceeding to file a report of an investigation that is the very subject of a lawsuit."
The commission later entered closed session to discuss the lawsuit with their lawyer.