These are headlines no Democratic candidate wants to see: A former governor under investigation for corruption, a top Senate Democrat accused of insider trading, a current governor with approval ratings in the 40s and a big tax increase to cope with the biggest budget shortfall in memory.
"Of course it's worrisome," N.C. House Speaker Joe Hackney said today. "You'd rather not have that environment. But people aren't going to blame Rep. (Tricia) Cotham for Mike Easley's problems."
Hackney, who met with new Mayor Anthony Foxx Tuesday afternoon, was also scheduled to appear at a fundraiser for Cotham, just as he's done for other Democrats throughout the state. Despite the bad run of publicity for some members of his party, the Orange County Democrat doesn't expect to see big losses at the polls, at least for the state House.
"There are some pick-up opportunities," he said, "And we really think we'll be able to pick up some seats on the House side."