Scandal-plagued and bullet-ridden Democratic Chairman David Parker opened the state convention Saturday facing more of the same questions about whether his leadership is a leg iron on the party's ticket.
Parker has been under fire for his role in a sexual harassment scandal that cost the Democratic executive director his job. Earlier this week a former staffer who was fired after voicing a complaint about sexual harassment filed a lawsuit against Parker and the state party.
But the ever-resolute Parker said Saturday that he doesn't expect the party's trouble to be much of a factor in the election. "I don't believe it's had any negative impact on the electorate," he said. "I do not believe that any of the stories will have an impact on the outcome in November. These issues that have come up are distractions. And they simply won't work."
Parker kept his job despite saying he would step aside at a May party meeting amid pressure from national Democrats and calls from the party's top leadership, including Gov. Bev Perdue and Lt. Gov. Walter Dalton, to resign.
--John Frank and Jim Morrill, staff writer