Elaine Marshall has to make a tough choice: raise money from Raleigh lobbyists or not.
She already took flak for it in the primary. Her defense: It wasn’t much money, and the donors were old friends.
Now that she’s won, it could be a lot more money. And a lot more flak.
If she were running for reelection, she couldn’t legally take the money. And the proposed Senate ethics bill prohibits raising money from people you regulate. As Secretary of State, she regulates not just lobbyists, but ALL corporations in North Carolina.
Some people in Raleigh view this as a fundamental conflict in her decision to stay as Secretary of State and run for Senate.
The upside for her is that, no matter what happens in November, she has a job.
The downside is the scrutiny that will come.
She got a taste of it by attending the Democratic Party fundraiser this week. Her campaign needs to recognize there’s more trouble where that came from.