"$82,350 from political action groups catapulted Berger to a total campaign fund that’s more than double Walker’s."

"That’s not including the $200,000 spent on Berger’s behalf by the super PAC Keep Conservatives United since January.

...Walker said the potential influence of special interest groups is very much an issue. “What that says to me is that when you’re taking money from both Democratic and Republican special interest groups before you ever get to Washington, you’re already bought,” Walker said.

...While Berger’s donations tended to come in at $500 and up, many of Walker’s donations were in amounts of $500 and less, with many in the $50 and $100 range. Retirees, homemakers and self-employed business owners represent a large contingent of Walker donors. CEOs, board chairmen, attorneys and company presidents are well-represented among Berger donors.

...While Walker received $400 from Alamance County Sheriff Terry Johnson’s campaign fund, he has not taken any PAC money.

Berger had received $128,350 in PAC contributions as of June 25, according to the latest FEC filing.

Raleigh super PAC Keep Conservatives United has spent nearly $200,000 on Berger’s behalf this year, all devoted to ads and mailers supporting Berger or opposing the other candidates in the race.

All of the super PAC’s independent expenditures in 2014 have been focused on the District 6 race, which is why one donation to Keep Conservatives United drew particular attention.

According to the FEC report, the Republican State Leadership Committee, which last year was led by Berger’s father, Phil Berger Sr., donated $75,000 to the super PAC on April 28. The N.C. Senate leader still serves on the national executive committee of the Republican state leadership group.

“If Phil Berger Sr. wasn’t Senate pro tem, this race would have been over a long time ago,” Walker said. “I haven’t been running against one man. I’ve been running against two.”

Asked about the donation, Phil Berger Jr. said he hadn’t had any discussions with his father about the donation.

...Walker said it is disingenuous for Berger to claim ignorance of that donation.

“It is unprecedented for this committee to fund a federal campaign through a super PAC,” Walker said. “In the past, that money has been earmarked for Republican state legislators. With (Berger) Senior being the most recent chairman and a board member, it’s ironic at best that the first time they do this, it’s for his son’s congressional race.”

...the Republican committee also supplied a large amount of money to state legislators to draw redistricting lines. District 6 was redrawn in 2011 to include Rockingham County, where Phil Berger Jr. is the district attorney.

PACs donating directly to the Berger campaign include a large number connected to health care, such as the American Dental Association, Blue Cross Blue Shield and pharmaceutical giant Eli Lilly.

...Some of the largest contributors to Keep Conservatives United also donated to Berger’s campaign, including Steve Wordsworth, vice president of MBM, a food distribution company in Rocky Mount; Robert Luddy, CEO of Captive Aire Systems in Raleigh; and Allen E. Gant Jr., who contributed $10,000 individually and $15,000 through his company Glen Raven in Burlington to the super PAC.

...special interests and people outside the area are getting control on every level of politics."


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