Last week, former NCGOP chair Robin Hayes pleaded guilty to lying to the FBI as part of an alleged bribery scheme involving indicted businessman Greg Lindberg. As part of his plea deal, Hayes will cooperate with federal prosecutors investigating an alleged scheme to funnel $2 million in campaign donations to Insurance Commissioner Mike Causey and the NCGOP in exchange for firing a top regulator at the Dept. of Insurance.
But what about the more than $5 million that Lindberg has given to other North Carolina politicians?
- The biggest recipient of Lindberg’s tainted money is Lt Gov. Dan Forest, who has refused to return any of the $2.4 million Lindberg donated to groups supporting Forest.
- Lindberg is Forest’s biggest political booster, as well as the biggest donor to the NCGOP. But while Robin Hayes is going to jail for his involvement in Lindberg’s corrupt bribery scheme and former NCGOP executive director Dallas Woodhouse lost his job, Dan Forest has refused to return the tainted money.
- The case simply underscores the NCGOP’s pay-to-play outlook on government and their reliance on corporate special interests to the extent that some are willing to break the law in favor of a big corporate donor.
North Carolina voters must demand that our leaders represent us, and not be bribed into doing favors for large donors. Recipients of Lindberg’s tainted money should give back the money.