For a time it was a symbol of one of the biggest corruption scandals in North Carolina history: the bathroom at Charlotte's Capital Grille restaurant. That was where prosecutors said then-Democratic House Speaker Jim Black accepted cash bribes from a group of chiropractors.
Monday Republicans invoked that rendezvous in attempt to link Lt. Gov. and Democratic gubernatorial nominee Walter Dalton to Democratic corruption.
State GOP Vice Chair Wayne King joined Mecklenburg County Republican chair Gideon Moore and a handful of supporters outside the Capital Grille, where Dalton had been scheduled to hold a campaign strategy meeting with Charlotte Mayor Anthony Foxx and others. That meeting was canceled, but not before Republicans announced plans to demonstrate outside.
And demonstrate they did, holding signs with pictures of Dalton, disgraced former Sen. John Edwards and controversial state party Chairman David Parker. "NC Failure Team," one poster read.
"I was wondering if Mayor Foxx and Lt. Gov. Dalton were going to get a bathroom to have their meeting," King told the only reporter who showed up.
The Dalton meeting was to be invitation only. King called it a "secret meeting" that was "abruptly canceled.
Said Dalton spokesman Schorr Johnson: "despite their manic rantings to the contrary, the lieutenant governor's schedule is based on balancing a robust campaign with his official duties, especially during the legislative session."