Much of the testimony throughout the State Board of Elections hearings has focused on the coordinated campaign between former Gov. Mike Easley's gubernatorial campaign and the N.C. Democratic Party.
One of the major allegations that has surfaced is that donors believed that they could write big checks to the party that would then be directed to Easley, a scheme to skirt campaign finance law.
The party's defense seems to hone in on the fact that Easley's campaign had a $500,000 commitment to the party in advance of election day in 2004.
The money was to be used for get-out-the-vote efforts and general promotion of Democratic candidates.
Easley's hired money raiser, Michael Hayden, said he wasn't briefed regularly on how Easley's campaign was raising for the party.
But Hayden and Easley testified that the party's executive director, Scott Falmlen, controlled the money.
Jim Cooney, an attorney for the party, said Tuesday that Easley's campaign raised a lot more money for the party than it got back. Cooney sought to emphasize Wednesday that Easley's campaign and the coordinated campaign were distinct organizations.
"Part of the problem, I think, is we may be running some concepts together," he told Easley as he began asking questions as Easley's testimony neared its fifth hour.