by Brenée Goforth
Communications Associate, John Locke Foundation
Last week, JLF’s Becki Gray made her regular appearance on North Carolina Public Radio WUNC with host Jeff Tiberii. Becki and fellow guest Rob Schofield from the N.C. Justice Center discussed the suspension of ECU’s Interim Chancellor, the reemergence of a bill to allow Duke Energy to adjust rates three years in advance, and former NCGOP Chairman Robin Hayes’ admission of lying to the FBI.
On the suspension of ECU Interim Chancellor Dan Gerlach, Tiberii explains:
More turmoil in the UNC system this time at ECU. The interim chancellor in Greenville, Dan Gerlach, found himself in hot water after videos emerged of him out at local bars drinking with young folks. He was suspended while a review takes place. The East Carolina University campus has, in large part, rallied to his defense taking to Twitter and is circulating a petition that got thousands and thousands of signatures.
N.C. Justice Center’s Rob Schofield weighed in:
I think he has admitted on the radio in Greenville that this was poor judgment on his part… I think it is emblematic though… This is just one of a long list of items – there has just been chaos in the UNC system.
Becki Gray stated:
Is this a step too far? Probably so. Is this a fireable offense? I don’t think so.
On the Robin Hayes Scandal, Tiberii prompted Gray for a response:
Former congressman Robin Hayes pleaded guilty to lying to the FBI in federal court. He was the chairman of the state GOP party when he got caught up – and played a central role in – what prosecutors say is a bribery scheme to gain influence over insurance regulations. Hayes may or may not serve prison time… We’ve talked about money in campaigns before, and I’m wondering more from you, Becky, if this whole saga has given you any more of an appetite for campaign finance reform.
What it has given me an appetite for is to make sure that we have people of integrity in leadership positions… I do not know what regulation could have prevented this. I mean, Robin Hayes is looking at prison time, so I’m not sure another wall would have made any difference in this…
We have a lot of laws in place. Again, this whole [case is taking place] because of the laws that we have in place. I don’t know that additional laws would’ve made any difference (Emphasis added).