The Locker Room

More checks for Decker, Hunter

Posted by Mitch Kokai at 3:53 PM

At least five checks from a Benson optometrist headed directly to state lawmakers -- outside the context of their political campaign funds.

That's the testimony this afternoon from Max Raynor.  His brother Eric Raynor testified earlier today.

Max Raynor says he wrote a series of blank checks in fall 2002 totaling $1,200 and delivered them to the N.C. Optometric Society's political action committee. Raynor signed each $100 check and left the date blank -- along with the name of the "payee."

Records revealed today show that four of those checks were eventually made out to "Mike Decker."  One was made out to "Howard Hunter." None of those five checks mentioned a campaign committee.

Former Rep. Mike Decker and current Hertford County Rep. Howard Hunter were allies of N.C. House Speaker Jim Black. Black and Hunter are Democrats. Decker is a Republican who switched party affiliations from Republican to Democrat in early 2003, just before the legislative session.

That party switch helped Black maintain a share of the speaker's job. Decker eventually returned to the Republican Party, but he lost a GOP primary in 2004.

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