Questions continue to swarm Easley

May 13, 2009 5:28:23 PM PDT
A series of reports about former governor Mike Easley's activities is raising a lot of eyebrows and questions.Like many governors before him, when Easley traveled he always had a Highway Patrol escort. But unlike other governors, he declined to reveal details of his travel while in office, citing security reasons.

However, now that he's out of office, the Highway Patrol says it can't find its 2005 records of Easley's travel with its troopers.

Some of that travel is now in question after published reports allege it was provided by the private jets of donors to Easley's campaign, but never reported as a contribution.

Now one of those questions is whether Governor Bev Perdue --who has a strict policy about open records-- will now try to find missing records from a prior administration.

"Any public record that belongs to the people of North Carolina will be made available to the people of North Carolina," Perdue said. And everybody in this state is held accountable."

And Governor Perdue reiterated Wednesday that she has enforced that rule since taking office this year.

But what happens when a state agency like the Highway Patrol says it doesn't have records it should have?

"Well I certainly will make public any records that I can put my hands on," Perdue said. "And I can't make them available if they're not available."

But the governor wouldn't say specifically whether she would call for an investigation.

She didn't respond directly to a question about her predecessor and whether she would speak to the attorney general about investigating Easley's travel or records related to it.

"I've read the same stories that everybody else has read and I'll look forward to hearing all sides of the story and seeing what happens," she said.

Reportedly, two agencies --the state Board of Elections and the U.S. Attorney's office-- are looking into the allegations against former governor Easley.


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