David Parker, the besieged state Democratic Party chairman, said Saturday that he would remain in his post after the party’s ruling committee voted not to accept his resignation.
In doing so, Parker defied pressure from party leaders from Washington to Raleigh to step aside because of the concern that his handling of sexual harassment accusations by a staffer would damage the party’s efforts in the fall.
The move came despite an effort by party leaders including Gov. Bev Perdue, Democratic gubernatorial nominee Walter Dalton, key state elected leaders, the national party, and the White House to ease Parker out.
The pressure came as Republicans have repeatedly hammered the Democrats on the scandal, and national political stories cite it as a reason why it will be difficult for President Barack Obama to carry North Carolina again in November.
At issue was Parker’s handling of a sexual harassment accusation brought by a staffer against Jay Parmley, the party’s executive director. There were criticisms of the confidential settlement in the matter, whether Parker should have taken it to the Executive Committee, and Parker’s off-key news conference last month.
For a little background on Jay Parmley, see this article:
Rebecca Burgin, a long-time former girlfriend of former North Carolina Democratic Party executive director Jay Parmley, told The Daily Caller that she believes Parmley infected her with HIV.
Parmley resigned on April 15 amid sexual harassment allegations from a former young male staffer.