North Carolina state officials have made recommendations that a stimulus grant given to a company run by Sen. Kay Hagan’s husband merits “further legal review,” according to The Charlotte Observer
The Observer reported today that Secretary of Energy and Natural Resources John Skvarla issued a staff memo seeking additional information about a $250,644 grants that went to JDC Manufacturing, which is co-owned by the incumbent Democrat's husband, Chip Hagan III.
The request for additional information was prompted by a memo sent to Skvarla by his staff.
In 2010, Hagan's company received $390,000 in federal stimulus funds and tax credits, and questions about the propriety of the deal and whether her family benefited personally have been an issue in the last months of the campaign.
An already bitter campaign grew more negative after it was learned that WBTV posted a short item on the memo on its website Saturday night, as did the Observer. But both stories were taken down shortly after they were posted, TownHall.com reported
A Google search of the Charlotte Observer story posted on Saturday yields an "error" page
The Hagan campaign has repeatedly denied there was anything improper with the grants and issued another statement concerning the latest revelation accusing the administration of Republican Gov. Pat McCrory of attempting to "smear" the Hagans.
“In an act of 11th-hour desperation, it appears that Speaker (Thom) Tillis is illegally using political allies in the McCrory administration to smear Sen. Hagan’s family and influence an election,” said Hagan spokeswoman Sadie Weiner in a statement reported by the Observer. “Impartial state officials have already said that the project was appropriate, and independent media investigations have agreed.”
While Hagan's camp sees a political vendetta, Republicans see a "conspiracy of silence" with regard to the media's handling of the allegations.
“It’s time to end the conspiracy of silence in the North Carolina media on Senator Kay Hagan’s ‘stimulus’ payday,” the Republican state-party chairman, Claude Pope, said in a Sunday statement issued to National Review
“The freedom of the press is a sacred trust – and hiding the truth is tantamount to lying to the people that they, and Senator Hagan, are supposed to serve," Pope added.
Republican candidate Tillis, who is challenging Hagan, used the stimulus grants as the theme of an ad run last month.
In the ad, entitlted "Tucked Away," the narrator says that "days after Kay Hagan took office, she pushed Obama's stimulus bill," followed by a clip of Hagan saying the Obama stimulus bill would benefit the country.
"It didn't. But it did help Kay Hagan move forward personally," the narrator concludes.
Watch the video here
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