Election news in the Carolinas |

Dole has twice the cash of Hagan

Republican U.S. Sen. Elizabeth Dole reported Wednesday having $1.7million in campaign cash – double the amount her Democratic rival held as they entered the final weeks of one of the nation's closest races.

Fundraising reports reviewed by The Associated Press show that Dole raised about $3.1 million for her re-election bid in the third quarter ending Sept. 30. Democratic state Sen. Kay Hagan reported raising $2.6 million with nearly $900,000 left to spend.

Both campaigns posted declines in the money available as each launched a steady stream of television ads. Dole entered the third quarter with $2.7 million. Hagan had $1.2 million.

Associated Press, (Raleigh) News & Observer

Registration fraud ‘rampant'?

The Republican National Committee is arguing that voter registration fraud is “rampant” in North Carolina.

RNC chief counsel Sean Cairncross and spokesman Danny Diaz said Wednesday that the Association of Community Organizations for Reform Now, or ACORN, is submitting fraudulent registration forms here.

The State Board of Elections has found 135 bogus forms out of the nearly 28,000 submitted by the group in North Carolina this year, or about half of one percent. Overall, more than 467,000 new voters have registered in North Carolina since the beginning of the year.

Johnnie Mclean, deputy director of the N.C. Board of Elections, said of the comments: “It just hit my last nerve, I think.”

The bogus applications, she said, appear to have been created “by a lazy worker” hired by ACORN.

One of the applications came from Mecklenburg County, 104 from Durham County, and 30 from Wake County. None of the applications made it into the statewide database.

RNC spokesman Diaz argued that a percentage of the false forms may end up leading to voter fraud. But experts and election officials say that fictionalized voter registrations rarely result in people casting ballots.

Peter St. Onge and Ryan Teague Beckwith

Robocall criticizes Obama

A robocall to N.C. voters criticizes Barack Obama for “putting Hollywood above America.”

The automated call from Republican presidential candidate John McCain and the Republican National Committee says that Obama spent more time at a Hollywood fundraiser than he did meeting with economic advisers. The call appears to be referring to a Sept. 17 fundraiser attended by Barbra Streisand, Leonardo DiCaprio and Steven Spielberg that raised an estimated $9 million for his campaign and the Democratic Party.

U.S. Rep. David Price, D-N.C., said that singling out one day during the two weeks of discussions in Congress is not a fair way to gauge Obama's involvement.

“It's totally absurd,” he said. “He had a fundraiser, just as Sarah Palin is going to have a fundraiser and John McCain has had hundreds of fundraisers.”

(Raleigh) News & Observer

Candidates at forum today

Candidates for Congress and the Democratic candidate for N.C. governor will be in Charlotte tonight for a forum sponsored by Helping Empower Local People.

Lt. Gov. Bev Perdue, the Democratic candidate for governor, will appear, as will U.S. Rep. Mel Watt and his Republican challenger Ty Cobb. Democratic congressional candidates Larry Kissell and Harry Taylor will also appear.

The event is from 7 to 8:30 p.m. at Mayfield Memorial Baptist Church, 700 W. Sugar Creek Road. H.E.L.P., a nonpartisan organization of 48 congregations and organizations, will ask the candidates their views on reform of nursing home regulations, prevention and support services for those with HIV/AIDS, job training for youth and young adults, and other issues.

Staff Reports