Under the Dome

GOP pressures Cooper on LGBT money; Democrats raise their own finance complaints

UPDATED The state Republican Party on Monday continued to press Attorney General Roy Cooper to take a stand on Charlotte’s anti-discrimination ordinance, counting about $20,000 in campaign contributions he has received in his run for governor from LGBT-rights supporters.

Cooper’s most recent campaign finance report shows he received the money from 15 contributors last year. Five of the contributions came from two employees of Replacements Ltd., a Greensboro company whose founder and chairman has championed gay rights. Four of the contributions come from one woman. Two contributions came from the Equality N.C. PAC, and a contribution from the state’s trial attorneys’ PAC is also included.

The GOP hopes to corner Cooper into publicly supporting the ordinance, which includes a controversial provision allowing transgender people to choose whichever restroom they identify with. Gov. Pat McCrory quickly came out against it, and some legislative leaders are talking of calling a special session to invalidate the ordinance.

The significance of that $20,000 is dimmed by the $5 million that Cooper has in his campaign account.

Update: Meanwhile, the state Democratic Party tried to wrestle attention to a different campaign finance issue: That Gov. Pat McCrory has received about $200,000 in contributions from people connected to former health and human services secretary Aldona Wos. Her husband and a number of employees of his company and their relatives made contributions to the governor.

Federal investigators last July subpoenaed records from the agency related to no-bid, expensive contracts. Wos resigned a few days later. The federal investigation became public in September. The campaign contributions were made in October and November.

Democrats are saying McCrory shouldn’t have accepted contributions after learning of the investigation.