North Carolina GOP Official Resigns After He’s Accused of Dragging Lobbyist Around His Office by Her Ponytail

Prominent North Carolina Republican Danny McComas on Friday submitted his resignation from the state Board of Transportation, the News Observer reports.

McComas resignation came after WUNC public radio reported that McComas, then a state legislator, pulled a lobbyist around his office by a ponytail in 2003.

Marisol Jimenez was a 26-year-old lobbyist in her first week at the General Assembly when she says McComas noticed a tattoo on the back of her neck that was partially exposed by a ponytail.

“He notices it, he remarks on it, and then he proceeds to take me by the ponytail and pull me around his office, from legislative staffer’s desk, to legislative staffer’s desk saying… ‘Can you believe what she has on her neck’?” she said.

Jimenez claims she tried to downplay the incident, which lasted 20 to 30 seconds. “But he was for sure dragging me around his office by my ponytail,” she said.

The incident was confirmed by Andrea Bazan, who was Jimenez’s boss at the time and was present at the meeting.

“That sounds to me like it would be something terrible. I don’t recall it, and I don’t remember the lady either,” McComas told WUNC. “If that happened, I think she should have called the police right then and there.”

Jimenez said the hair-pulling was the worst incident in a pattern of uncomfortable interactions.

“What I found was a group of men who were sort of unashamed in flexing their power with me, and crossing boundaries with me, and putting me into situations that were hostile and sometimes even threatening,” Jimenez said.

McComas served nine terms in the House, followed by chairing the North Carolina Ports Authority.

“I certainly don’t recall dragging her around by the ponytail,” McComas claimed.

Enjoy this piece?

… then let us make a small request. AlterNet’s journalists work tirelessly to counter the traditional corporate media narrative. We’re here seven days a week, 365 days a year. And we’re proud to say that we’ve been bringing you the real, unfiltered news for 20 years—longer than any other progressive news site on the Internet.

It’s through the generosity of our supporters that we’re able to share with you all the underreported news you need to know. Independent journalism is increasingly imperiled; ads alone can’t pay our bills. AlterNet counts on readers like you to support our coverage. Did you enjoy content from David Cay Johnston, Common Dreams, Raw Story and Robert Reich? Opinion from Salon and Jim Hightower? Analysis by The Conversation? Then join the hundreds of readers who have supported AlterNet this year.

Every reader contribution, whatever the amount, makes a tremendous difference. Help ensure AlterNet remains independent long into the future. Support progressive journalism with a one-time contribution to AlterNet, or click here to become a subscriber. Thank you. Click here to donate by check.