Friday, August 17, 2007

Where in the last three years did Pat get a million bucks?


From the Hickory Daily Record:
Our representative has done real well since entering Congress.

McHenry’s financial reports show, [at Open Secrets dot org] for instance, that he went from owning virtually nothing - he said - when he ran for Congress in 2004 to having a net worth in the bracket of “$720,000 to $1.2 million.”

Wow, where did that kind of net worth come from in just three years?

When McHenry first entered Congress, according to his filing, the Gastonia whiz kid reported “$68,009-$281,000” in net worth. That ranked 337th out of 435 members of Congress; in other words, only 98 members of Congress actually were “poorer” than he was.

But in the reports since, the august representative of the 10th District has seen his net worth skyrocket to the “$301,018-$877,000” bracket - on its way to “$720,000 to $1.2 million.” By any measure, on paper, he’s become a wealthy young man very quickly.

Not just wealthy, but every young adult’s financial dream - having a net worth of over a million dollars by your early 30s!

Would it be too much to ask the enterprising and wildly successful congressman to address publicly what has gone so terribly right in his financial life since he first ran for Congress in 2004 as “the only small businessman in this race”?

That year, the owner of McHenry Real Estate of Cherryville listed zero assets in his business - same as he does now. Could it be that “McHenry Real Estate” never really was a serious “business” three years ago, as his opponents claimed?
But the disclosure forms apparently don’t tell the whole McHenry financial story.

According to the Catawba County Geospatial Information Services (GIS) system, there’s a condo on Lake Hickory at 2200 Sixth St., NW, (No. 2), Hickory, for which McHenry is listed as the owner since April 27, 2005. If you grew up in Hickory, it’s located between the former sites of the old Rock House and the old Moose Club on “the lake road.”

This residence is not listed among his apparent real estate rental properties in Gastonia, Cherryville and Charlotte on Schedule III - Assets and “Unearned” Income that he reported on May 7. And yet, there it is, big as day in Deed Book 2658, Page 496, Parcel ID 3704170122320002, showing Patrick T. McHenry as the owner.

Is it barely possible that this young public servant is hiding some of his assets from the public? Maybe he thinks we might object to his amassing too much of a fortune too fast?

So, for sure, something is amiss. Both the deed for 2200 Sixth St., NW, (No. 2) and the House ethics reports bear McHenry’s signature. What gives here, congressman? Can you explain this?

Dennis Benfield
Dennis Benfield is a candidate for Caldwell County Commissioner.


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