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N.C. Judge Caught Stealing Campaign Sign that Called Him a ‘Proud Democrat’

'It appears that you believe yourself to be above the law... '

(Mark Pellin, Headline USA) Democrat candidates fretting a red wave midterm are so desperate to distance themselves from their party’s toxic messaging and damaging policies that, in at least one case, a judge allegedly resorted to breaking the law.

N.C. Superior Court Judge Jesse Caldwell IV, a Democrat who was appointed by the state’s leftist governor and is running for reelection, was caught on camera removing campaign signs from an early-voting precinct, according to an Oct. 31 letter to Caldwell from Philip R. Thomas, chief counsel of the North Carolina Republican Party.

The signs, however, weren’t promoting a rival candidate but rather displaying a simple message: “JESSE CALDWELL IS A PROUD DEMOCRAT”.

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The signs that Caldwell was caught removing and stashing in the trunk of a car were the work of Jonathan Fletcher, who had them made as part of his duties as chairman of the Gaston County Republican Party.

The signs were legally placed and included content that “is not false or misleading,” Thomas wrote in the N.C. GOP’s complaint to Caldwell, which was obtained by Headline USA.

The message, in fact, was a direct echo of a statement Caldwell had made during an article about him in a local paper, where he declared about his reelection bid, “I am proudly running as a Democrat.”

Apparently, he has since become less proud of his party’s platform, as implied by the video that showed Caldwell removing signs which did not belong to him but simply repeated his own past characterization.

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On Oct. 29, the morning after the signs were posted, Caldwell was “captured on camera removing and carrying away one of the signs belonging to Mr. Fletcher without his permission,” the N.C. GOP letter stated.

Their complaint contained several photographs labeled as “exhibits” that offered evidence of the alleged crime.

Jesse Caldwell
North Carolina Judge Jesse Caldwell IV is seen removing a campaign sign that labels him a ‘Proud Democrat.’ / PHOTO: NC GOP

Republicans demanded that Caldwell “immediately cease and desist in your unlawful removal of their property” and “immediately return Mr. Fletcher’s property, the sign that you stole …” 

The letter alleged that, based on video evidence, Caldwell “clearly intended to deprive Mr. Fletcher of his property as you placed his sign in the trunk of a car and returned to electioneering in the parking lot.”

Caldwell’s nefarious intent was reconfirmed when he rebuffed Fletcher’s overtures to discuss the matter, even after Fletcher said he wouldn’t pursue “any further action” if the stolen sign was returned.

“I’d love to see the magistrate that brought those charges,” the self-assured Democrat judge replied, according to the NCRP letter.

That would be the same judge who, in the interview when he declared himself a proud Democrat, boasted that, “My decisions are based on the rule of law.”

“It appears that you believe yourself to be above the law,” Thomas wrote in the letter to Caldwell.

The letter reminded the Democrat judge that the North Carolina Code of Judicial Conduct instructs that “[a] judge should respect and comply with the law and should conduct himself/herself at all times in a manner that promotes public confidence in the integrity and impartiality of the judiciary.”

In that light, on behalf of the “North Carolina Republican Party and the Gaston County Republican Party” the letter to Caldwell demanded that the judge “immediately cease and desist in your unlawful removal of their property, including but not limited to campaign signs.”

“We demand that you immediately return Mr. Fletcher’s property, the sign that you stole from the Gaston County Board of Elections on October 29, 2022,” the letter stated.

“The North Carolina Republican Party and the Gaston County Republican Party intend to pursue consequences for your unlawful behavior and abuse of power to the full extent of the law. You are not above the law.”

Unless, apparently, you’re a partisan Democrat judge who was appointed to fill his partisan Democrat father’s unexpired term (he aged-retired) by the state’s partisan Democrat governor who has worked closely with the state’s partisan Democrat attorney general to weaken election security, promote illegal immigration, and undermine law enforcement.

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