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Myrick will lobby for Christian broadcaster

Former U.S. Rep. Sue Myrick, who left office last year, is back on Capitol Hill in a new job – as a lobbyist for a Christian broadcaster.

The Charlotte Republican registered last month to lobby for the Inspiration Network, based in Indian Land, S.C.

The cable TV network is one of the world’s largest Christian broadcasters, with religious programming in more than 120 countries. It operates from a 92-acre campus just over the state line in Lancaster County.

Myrick calls it a temporary job to help the network with an issue before Congress that involves satellite technology and broadcasting.

“This is something that’s a fairness issue … for independent networks,” she said. “They don’t have a voice when it comes to negotiations on these issues.”

The network is run by David Cerullo. It began in 1990 from the vestiges of Jim Bakker’s PTL Club when Cerullo’s father Morris paid $7 million to buy the assets of PTL’s cable television network out of bankruptcy. Jim Morrill

‘Senseless’ gimmick?

A tea party challenger followed U.S. Rep. Robert Pittenger out of the Mecklenburg County Republican convention Saturday.

Mike Steinberg, Pittenger’s opponent in the May 6 9th District primary, had criticized the congressman for voting to end last fall’s government shutdown. Pittenger was one of 87 Republicans voting with House GOP leaders and most Democrats to end the shutdown, despite the fact that meant continued funding for the Affordable Care Act.

In a hallway outside, a reporter asked Pittenger to respond. He was defending his conservative credentials when Steinberg came up.

“You voted for Obamacare,” Steinberg said.

“I voted to end a senseless gimmick,” Pittenger replied.

“You voted for Obamacare, just say it,” Steinberg said.

“I voted to end a senseless shutdown of the federal government,” Pittenger shot back.

The argument continued. At one point, Steinberg asked Pittenger whether he would debate him in public.

“You seek to distort the facts; that’s the game you play,” Pittenger said as he walked away.

Earlier, Pittenger told delegates he had voted to change or defund Obamacare 20 times.

“Steinberg and other Republicans should focus on defeating (Sen.) Kay Hagan and winning the Senate,” Pittenger said in a subsequent email. “Then we have opportunity for policy change. It was the right cause but ill-fated and poor strategy from the beginning.” Jim Morrill

Every bench?

One candidate at Saturday’s GOP convention in Charlotte was N.C. Supreme Court hopeful Eric Levinson.

If elected, Levinson may be the only judge to have served on all four court levels in North Carolina.

Levinson started in 1996 as a District and Family Court judge.

Levinson was later elected to the state appeals court and then was appointed to the Superior Court in 2009. Jim Morrill

Cannon fodder

There wasn’t much gloating about Democratic Mayor Patrick Cannon’s arrest and resignation at Saturday’s Mecklenburg Republican convention. But one party official did try to use it as motivation.

Lee Ann Patton reminded delegates that 82 percent of voters stayed home last November.

“It looks like the Democrats are imploding,” she said. “Frankly, if we had gotten out the vote and Mr. ( Edwin) Peacock was our mayor, we wouldn’t have these headlines.”

Cannon was arrested last week after an FBI sting and resigned his office. Jim Morrill

N.C. ports director named

The North Carolina State Ports Authority has a new executive director.

The authority’s board of directors selected Paul Cozza for the post last week.

Cozza previously served in several roles for Maersk Line Limited and worked for more than 10 years with CSX Corp./Sea-Land Service Inc.

He replaces Jeff Miles, who served as interim director since January 2013.

Cozza was chosen after an eight-month search. Associated Press

Quoting

“It’s the Obamacare of transportation.”

– Republican N.C. House candidate Sharon Hudson, on proposed Interstate 77 toll lanes.

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