An important column in today’s Carolina Journal from Locke Foundation president John Hood, arguing that Governor Easley “has a significant public-relations problem on his hands,” though he might not “fully comprehend its magnitude.”
Hood took note of Easley’s comments at NYU Law School, revealed on Saturday in a Neff/Niolet N&O article: that Nifong had promised not to run if appointed (an assertion reinforced by the language used in Nifong’s appointment announcement); that Nifong’s pre-primary publicity barrage was improper; that Nifong’s behavior “looks bad for North Carolina. It looks bad for the DA’s office. It looks bad for the criminal justice system in general.”
The problem, Hood correctly points out:
As far as we know, the governor didn’t attempt to rein Nifong in. A former prosecutor himself, Easley seems never to have intervened to encourage theNot an impressive performance, to put it mildly.
office to do its job properly. When the case took a turn for the outrageous, he didn’t ask for Nifong’s resignation. Durham
What’s worse, when Nifong filed to run for DA last year and drew a strong challenge from Freda Black, Easley didn’t bother to mention that Nifong had lied to him about his political intentions. Democratic primary voters might well have valued that piece of information. By the fall, when Nifong’s malfeasance was clearly evident, Easley made no move to set the record straight. He did nothing.