Some quick words about last night’s radio show: The Social Spitball Show with Bram Sarkowski.
Raleigh, NC—Last night on the Social Spitball Show hosted by Bram Sarkowski—Democratic leaders supportive of North Carolina Chairman Randy Voller, broke the news that some within the party have planned on making public a formal complaint against Voller. The complaint, apparently headed by congressional district chair, Luke Hyde, will ask the NC Council of Review to remove Voller and newly elected NCDP Executive Director, Casey Mann. They are claiming mismanagement of tax check off money and will ask for a vote of no confidence in an effort to remove Voller as Chair of the party.
All of this comes on the heels of controversy surrounding the NCDP, with the firing of former Executive Director Robert Dempsey. That firing led to speculation that the Rev. Dr. Ben Chavis would possibly be recommended to replace Dempsey. Dr. Chavis was part of the infamous Wilmington Ten (nine men and one woman) who were falsely accused and imprisoned for a fire bombing that took place in Wilmington, North Carolina during the civil right era.
Casey Mann was elected the Executive Director at a meeting held in Greensboro a few weeks ago. That meeting was designed to address the financial situation of the North Carolina Democratic Party among top Dem leaders in a special closed session. In that meeting Chairman Randy Voller was misquoted as saying the NC Democratic Party had only $60,000 in the bank and that the official HQ—The Goodwin House—may have to be sold at some point to cut expenses.
Apparently, that misinformation grew legs because someone inside the closed session meeting was texting WRAL reporter Laura Leslie and giving her—what some people later said—was a play by play of the meeting. That issue to me is especially relevant because journalists that high on the food chain are held to a much higher standard In what they can and can not report. How vetted was the source? Did the source have an agenda?
So, here are the issues with the NCDP as they stand now:
Why would a group of congressional chairs with the NCDP call for a no confidence vote against Randy Voller if that meeting would cost tens of thousands of dollars and the NCDP is apparently broke? Who stands to gain with a no confidence vote? Who stands to lose?
Why would a group of Democrats feel it necessary to oust Voller when the event would coincide very closely with the NC primary elections?
At the end of the day, issues such as these seem to revolve around money and power. As I’ve said before, there are two very different Democratic groups waging war against each other: the “country club Dems” and the “grassroots Democrats.” And, whoever wins will control the fate of North Carolina for years to come.
A few quick words about why I am so passionate about this Chairman and the NCDP.
Some time ago, I began to hear stories about mismanagement within the Randy Voller administration of the North Carolina Democratic Party. I began to blog about some of those issues and some of the negative press Voller had been getting from the news media. As the issues got deeper and the allegations became more serious—I asked questions not only of the people making the complaints against Voller, but I went to Chairman Voller himself—and asked him to give his side of the story.
Several things happened that I didn’t expect. Chairman Voller was very forthcoming with his answers and he didn’t hide behind “no comments” and non-answers. He also did something very few politicians have ever done with me before: he said “don’t take my word for it—ask others who would know the answer….” From there forward, Voller gave me names and contact information of people who not only could collaborate his statements, but he also gave me contact information of the very people who didn’t like him or his policies. Voller literally told me, “well, I want you to hear all sides of the story.” That reaction by Voller has nothing to do with me—it seems he’s more than willing to give anyone straight answers to tough questions, if they’re willing to take the time to ask.
But, what happed next was surprising: the Voller haters turned out to be very “cloak and dagger” in backing up their statements with fact. Some would not return my emails or my instant messages on Facebook after I asked them to explain their statements. I’m still waiting for Frank Eaton to return my messages.
To my discredit, however, I’m still harder on Chairman Voller than I am the Voller haters. But, I sleep better at night knowing that I don’t throw information out on the internet without doing some due diligence in fact finding. Sadly, I can’t say the same for such people as John Frank with the News and Observer, Bob Geary with the Indy and now apparently others who are more than willing to prematurely jump on the Voller hater bandwagon.