ABC chief resigns over cartoon

May 5, 2009 5:26:47 PM PDT
North Carolina Gov. Beverly Perdue demanded and received the resignation of the state's top liquor regulator over an e-mail that showed an altered photo of a watermelon patch outside the White House. Perdue said Tuesday the image mocking Barack Obama, the first black president in the U.S., was "offensive and unacceptable."

Alcoholic Beverage Commission Chairman Douglas Fox did not give a reason for his resignation Tuesday in a letter to Perdue. He said he would stay on until his successor was ready.

But Perdue spokesman David Kochman says the resignation was immediate.

"I find the whole thing of race, sex, religion as criteria for humor or for avoidance of important issues repugnant and I'm sorry it happened and glad he resigned," Perdue said. "He did some really good things in NC don't forget that, but he's off my team."

The News & Observer and Charlotte Observer reported their reporters acquired the e-mail sent from Fox's law firm to a lobbyist for Southern Wine & Spirits, a major liquor distributor.


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