Politics & Government

The Source

Foxx most active stock trader of N.C. delegation

If U.S. Rep. Virginia Foxx, a Banner Elk Republican, ever loses her congressional seat, she might want to give Wall Street a try.

Among the North Carolina delegation, Foxx was the most active buyer and seller of stocks and bonds since 2012, with 89 trades, according to an Observer review of new data compiled by the campaign finance watchdogs at the Center for Responsive Politics.

And some of the trades were for big dollars. In November 2013, for example, Foxx sold shares of Altria Group, the cigarette maker, in a trade valued in the range of $101,000 to $250,000. (The trades are listed in value ranges, instead of specific amounts.)

Under the STOCK Act, passed in 2012, members of Congress have to submit “periodic transaction reports” within 45 days of making large sales or purchases of stock. Now those reports can be searched on CRP’s opensecrets.org web site.

The Observer’s review found trades by six N.C. House members, including Foxx. Mick Mulvaney, who represents South Carolina’s 5th District across the Mecklenburg County border, had 13 trades. Senators aren’t available yet on the site.

Retiring Republican Howard Coble of Greensboro was another representative keeping his broker busy, with 58 trades. In one of his more recent purchases, Coble in June bought stock in Lululemon Athletica, the yoga pants maker, in the $1,000 to $15,000 range.

Coble also appeared to make a short-term profit on Bank of America shares, buying on Aug. 15, 2012, and selling on Sept. 14, 2012. The bank’s shares climbed from $7.87 to $9.55 in that period. Both trades were in the $1,000 to $15,000 range, according to the database.

Charlotte Democrat Mel Watt, who resigned his seat in January to run the Federal Housing Finance Agency, had six trades on his recent periodic transaction reports. The former House Financial Services Committee member who helped craft the 2010 Dodd-Frank financial reform law sold Deutsche Bank stock in December ($100,001 to $250,000). Rick Rothacker

Was it ‘Dumont’ or ‘Dwight’ who made ‘The Catch’?

After a local columnist for another publication referred to Mecklenburg County commissioner Dumont Clarke as Dwight Clarke, fellow commissioner and political opposite Bill James started a fun email chat that Clarke, known for his dry humor, quickly joined in.

The column was about the sales tax bill in Raleigh that won Senate approval on Thursday, and James emailed that it referred to “Dwight Clarke as a commissioner providing commentary about some plan to derail the bill.”

Clarke, Dumont that is, responded: “Hey ya’ll. Dwight here. I’ve been called ‘Durant,’ ‘Durwood,’ ‘DuPont,’ ‘Durmant,’ ‘Lamont,’ ‘Bernard’ and lots of other variations on my real name ‘Dumont.’ I do believe this is the first time I’ve been called ‘Dwight’.”

For the record, Dumont’s name could have been mistaken for a famous Dwight Clarke, the Charlotte-raised (Garinger High graduate) San Francisco 49er who caught a pass from Joe Montana on Jan. 10, 1982, to beat Dallas for the NFC Championship.

The connection has been immortalized as “The Catch.” David Perlmutt

NCIS agent endorses sheriff’s candidate

Rick Ervin, the Democratic nominee for Iredell County sheriff, gained an endorsement from the recently retired head of NCIS in the Carolinas – not the TV drama but the real Naval Criminal Investigative Service.

Ervin, an Iredell County native and an NCIS special agent in the 1980s, “is a seasoned law enforcement professional with mounds of experience,” former NCIS special agent-in-charge Joe Kennedy told the Observer.

Ervin is now the investigator for the Rowan County District Attorney’s Office. He faces Iredell sheriff’s Capt. Darren Campbell, the GOP nominee, and unaffiliated candidate Sean Schutt in the November general election in the heavily Republican-leaning county.

Kennedy will discuss the real NCIS at 7 p.m. Thursday at the Statesville Civic Center. To attend, call the Ervin campaign at 704-402-3900 or send an email to ErvinForSheriff@gmail.com Joe Marusak

Koch brothers back Tillis campaign

A day after a Democratic-aligned group accused Republican Thom Tillis of being “like family” to the Koch brothers, a report shows the family recently gave his campaign the maximum donation.

Charles Koch, his wife, son and daughter-in-law each gave Tillis the maximum $2,600 contribution, according to his campaign finance report made public Wednesday. Tillis, the House speaker, reported the combined $10,400 in donations on June 26 and 27. Earlier this year, he reported a $5,000 donation from the Koch Industries PAC.

Koch and his brother, David, the billionaire conservative donors reviled by Democrats, also are boosting Tillis’ campaign through various outside groups they support. Tillis is one of a select group of candidates getting showered with Koch family money this campaign season.

On Tuesday, Patriot Majority USA began running a statewide television ad – backed by $1.1 million over two weeks – tying Tillis to the Koch brothers, suggesting the candidate is aligned with wealthy corporate leaders. The ads are designed to help boost Democrat Kay Hagan’s re-election effort.

A Tillis campaign spokesman did not immediately return a message seeking more information about the Koch contributions and whether Tillis met with the donors. On June 26, Tillis missed the House session to attend an unspecified meeting, his campaign has said. He attended another fundraising event June 27 in Charlotte. John Frank, (Raleigh) News & Observer