Monday, October 22, 2007

Roll Call blasts McHenry

Thank God someone in the traditional media (with far more resources than yours truly) finally started asking Pat McHenry the financial questions we've been picking at for months.

In a subscription-only article Roll Call not only questions McHenry's new-found wealth, but also has the reportorial balls to highlight his appalling hypocrisy about openness.

Particularly of note, Roll Call uncovered a third unreported property. We'd already told you that McHenry owns two homes in the district whose ownership and financing he is not required to disclose publicly. However, he inherited a $40,000 share of lakefront property in Lincoln County he has also never reported.

And, remember, McHenry sits on the House Committee on Financial Services, whose legislation directly affects companies in the real estate financing business.

Rep. Patrick McHenry (R-N.C.) took to the House floor late last spring and ripped into Democrats for blocking his proposal requiring Members to disclose the existence and value of their personal residences. “We’ve seen in recent Washington scandals the results of this loophole that allows Members to hide ownership of properties,” McHenry said.
Roll Call went on to say that McHenry has "taken considerable liberty himself with the House’s personal property exemption" not disclosing two homes and that third lake front property they say adds up to over $300,000.
In addition, since he was first elected in 2004, McHenry’s financial statements overall offer only vague hints into myriad land deals that are transforming Congress’ youngest Member from a college student, who is a licensed real estate agent, into a prosperous man in less than a decade.
Check out my article at

Here are a few more tidbits:
For example, on this year’s forms McHenry disclosed his October 2006 purchase of a house in central North Carolina. Public records show McHenry paid $87,500 for the property, which he bought from a local politician. Within months of the sale, tax assessors determined the house was worth 30 percent more.

UPDATE: The local pol: Gaston County Commissioner Allen Fraley who within a week donated $500 to McHenry's campaign.
And last summer McHenry, his four siblings and a business partner sold a 40-acre plot to a local developer for $1.5 million. The developer, Charlotte-based E.C. Griffith Co., plans to soon break ground on a 1,000-plus-unit suburban housing development. McHenry made a short-term profit of at least 200 percent on the deal.
It's particularly amazing to me how much he won't even respond to their questions.

What do you have to hide, Pat? Or, perhaps I should be asking, is there anything you aren't hiding?


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