Update: Councilwoman Trudy Wade submitted a requested an advisory opinion from the Executive Director of NC State Board of Elections on Wednesday.
The State Board of Elections has said they reviewed this event and said that it is legal. You can review the response from the State Board of Elections by clicking the link on the left.
Greensboro, NC -- The State Board of Elections is investigating a state senate candidate's campaign event.
Greensboro City Councilwoman Dr. Trudy Wade is a candidate for NC Senate District 27.
On Wednesday, Wade's campaign announced they're holding an event this weekend in which "Trudy Wade for Senate" will help as many as 100 people fill up their tanks at a gas station in Whitsett.
When News 2's Lauren Melvin asked the State Board of Elections whether this is a violation of state campaign laws, Don White, who is general counsel for the state board of elections said they will investigate this immediately.
Additionally, according to the Guilford County Board of Elections, there's a gray area.
"As far as campaign finance, it seems like it's OK, but there are some legalities and some other questions, such as, is this purchasing a vote or giving something of monetary value in exchange for a vote?" said Charlie Collect, Deputy Director of Guilford County Board of Elections.
Starting at 9 a.m. Saturday, Wade will pump gas for the first 100 cars to line up at a gas station.
Those customers will pay only for the cost of the gas. Wade's campaign will cover the taxes, about 60 cents per gallon and for up to 20 gallons per person.
Wade told News 2 that she does not believe this is illegal, in fact she knows an event like this has been done before.
Wade added that she's hosting the event to gather information from people, to see how they feel about the gas tax and how much it's hurting them. She said she's not asking for their vote.
However, Collicutt said there's a very fine line.
"It does raise some red flags because it is a felony in North Carolina to give goods or money or the promise of that for a vote," said Collicutt.
The law in North Carolina states:
It shall be unlawful for any person to give or promise or request or accept at any time, before or after any such primary or election, any money, property or other thing of value whatsoever in return for the vote of any elector.
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