Ten years ago this month, Mike Easley was elected Governor of North Carolina. Today … well, you know.
I’ve been reminding people this week that I was a Dennis Wicker man in the 2000 Democratic primary.
Despite that, I never disliked Easley. But I recall one thing from the campaign that may have been a warning sign.
From the start, Easley had a big lead over Wicker in the polls. One reason was that he had appeared in a series of public-service ads on TV – paid through the Attorney General’s Office, not campaign funds.
We thought that was a bit questionable. But we never got much traction on the issue in the media.
Some of Easley’s harsher critics thought his luck, wit and charm helped him get away with it.
Maybe it would have been better if he hadn’t.