A shocking suggestion
"Oh, no, no, no... I've never done that in my life."
--State Sen. Marc Basnight, president pro tem of the state Senate and the state's most powerful legislator, to The N&O's Pat Stith. Basnight was asked if he had threatened budget reprisals if the transportation department didn't drop plans for a steel barrier to stop beach erosion threatening N.C. 12 in Kitty Hawk. As a result of Basnight's pressure, the proposal was dropped and a plan to dump new sand along the beach--as Basnight had urged--was funded instead.