Under the Dome

Super PAC for Newby releases misleading attack ad against Ervin

A nasty, last-minute attack ad against state Supreme Court candidate Sam Ervin IV hit the airwaves Friday – full of inflammatory innuendo.

The ad comes from one of the super PACs pumping outside money into the campaign to re-elect state Supreme Court Justice Paul Newby over Ervin, an appellate court judge. Most of the funding for the super PAC, known as Justice for All N.C.,  comes from the Washington, D.C.-based Republican State  Leadership Committee, which has contributed more than $1 million to the effort so far.

The ad claims that Ervin and family members contributed thousands of dollars to “convicted felon Mike Easley’s campaign” – ignoring the fact that the campaign contributions would have been made before the former governor was convicted in 2010 of knowingly filing a false campaign report.

The ad goes on to say that Easley appointed Ervin to the state Utilities Commission -- Easley actually reappointed him. It says Ervin voted to raise rates by millions of dollars.

Ervin is planning a news conference this afternoon to address the ad.

Update: Justice for All paid about $40,000 for a TV ad at a station in Winston-Salem to start running Friday through Election Day, FCC records show. Unknown yet how many other stations might be lined up.

On Wednesday, Justice for All sent about $200,000 to the N.C. Judicial Coalition, the super PAC set up by prominent conservatives Tom Fetzer and Bob Luddy, for TV ads. The Judicial Coalition also has on its board former chief Supreme Court Justice Burley Mitchell, a registered Democrat, who said he agreed to join because he believes in keeping incumbent justices in office if they're doing a good job.

Allowing Justice for All to do the dirty work  of running negative TV ads keeps the more prominent members of the Judicial Coalition at arms length.


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Judicial Conduct



"A judge should participate in establishing, maintaining, and enforcing, and should himself observe, appropriate standards of conduct to ensure that the integrity and independence of the judiciary shall be preserved."

CANON 5 C(1):

"A judge should refrain from financial and business dealings that reflect adversely on his impartiality, interfere with the proper performance of his judicial duties, exploit his judicial position or involve him in frequent transactions with lawyers or persons likely to come before the court on which he serves."

CANON 7: "A judge may engage in political activity consistent with his status as a public official. The provisions of Canon 7 are designed to strike a balance between two important but competing considerations: (1) the need for an impartial and independent judiciary and (2) in light of the continued requirement that judicial candidates run in public elections as mandated by the Constitution and laws of North Carolina, the right of judicial candidates to engage in constitutionally protected political activity."

Notably, judges are prohibited from supporting individual political campaigns and endorsing individuals running for public office except as part of a joint judicial campaign.

The commercials running on behalf of Justice Newby, most notably the most recent negative ad, are unbalanced and inconsistent with the Canons.  The point of the Code of Conduct is to ensure a fair and independent judicary and o ensure that judges don't appear to have compromised impartiality.  This is not about whether one supports or opposes Justice Newby.  It is a shame and scandal how third party interests are, through PACs, are appearing to compromise Justice Newby's independence.  For shame.

Wow. What does Burley think?

"Allowing Justice for All to do the dirty work  of running negative TV ads keeps the more prominent members of the Judicial Coalition at arms length."

Read more here:

Does a former Chief Justice of the NC Supreme Court approve of these smear tactics in a race for judge?  Burley Mitchell is tied in with this crowd?  Really?  Silence is tacit approval.

The N&O is soooo anti-Newby that

The N&O is soooo anti-Newby I hear McClatchy is going to buy TV ads on WRAL to attack him.

All the more reason to VOTE FOR PAUL NEWBY!   If The N&O hates him so he MUST BE GOOD!


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