State Senator Fletcher Hartsell accepted campaign contributions from billionaire David Murdock in excess of the $4,000 per election limit. In the 2008 election cycle Cabarrus Republican Hartsell received a $4,000 Murdock contribution 5/01/08, during the primary. Hartsell received another contribution of $4,000 from Murdock 10/17/08, during the general, apparently maxing out legal contributions.
However, Hartsell had also participated in a joint fundraising committee known as the Cabarrus-Rowan Leadership Celebration. The committee was shared by five candidates equally: Jeff Barnhart, Linda Johnson, Fred Steen, Bob Crumley and Fletcher Hartsell. Murdock contributed $4,000 to the joint fundraising committee 11/15/07. Of that $4,000 the amount of $800 is considered a contribution to Fletcher Hartsell by David Murdock during the primary.