Thursday, November 29, 2007

Crack in Pat's patina of invulnerability

Even the traditional "mainstream" media is beginning to catch on.

This in CharO this morning:
The 10th District isn't one that national Democrats normally would spend energy on, but Rep. Patrick McHenry of Cherryville gives them optimism.

McHenry has been controversial at home since he won a Republican primary runoff in 2004 and in Washington for his role attacking the Democrats.

"You've got somebody who is just too strident," says Rep. Chris Van Hollen of Maryland, the chairman of the Democratic Congressional Campaign Committee.

He has high hopes for the candidacy of Daniel Johnson of Hickory, a lawyer and Navy veteran.

McHenry could face a primary as well, from lawyer Lance Sigmon of Newton, a longtime military officer.

It's too soon to say if Sigmon will have any luck raising money or if Johnson is capable of flipping voters who carry Republican registration cards.

McHenry says he's working to bring "conservative change" to Washington and stands by his record of advocacy for the district.

And this from the Greensboro News-Record a few days ago:

McHenry has a credible challenger . .

Lots of good stuff like this:
My mom lives in Hickory and voted for Republican Patrick McHenry in his first run for Congress in 2004.

But now she's very interested in the candidacy of Democrat Daniel Johnson, a 31-year-old Hickory native and military hero.

And this:
There's no Asheville in the 10th District, where the largest "city" is Hickory, so any Democrat with a prayer of winning has got to be fairly conservative.

But then, Johnson's military story is compelling. The fact that he's been a prosecutor also helps. He's the son of a Presbyterian minister and a high school teacher, also to the good.

His youth and political inexperience are only slight problems. McHenry was only 29, with a single term in the state House of Representatives under his belt, when he was elected to Congress in 2004. That makes him 32 now.

And then the author, editorial writer Doug Clark, struck some uncharacteristic traditional media hits:
. . . [McHenry's] made his reputation as an attack dog for Republicans, which has turned off some of his constituents -- my mom, for one. At the same time, he's been active in pushing for benefits for his district, like a VA outpatient clinic in Hickory and drought relief for farmers.

I can't predict how this congressional race will shape up, but it looks like Democrats have a candidate in Daniel Johnson with proven courage and character. If he doesn't align himself with his party's Nancy Pelosi wing, the 10th District's moderate voters, like my mom, will give him a very close look.

Wednesday, November 28, 2007

Pat dumps on Republicans

Almost as if he isn't one. No suggestions on how to fix the problems but, "please, please, please, reelect me because I'm being honest." Kind of. Even an out-of-state retiree (who clearly knows very little about you) could see through your bullshit, Pat.

In the CharO by Walker Lundy:

When he speaks in Mooresville instead of Congress, Republican Rep. Patrick McHenry sounds like he doesn't think much of Congress or Republicans. "Republicans were at the trough" when they held the majority in Congress, he said. "They had power for the sake of power."

He said, for example, that the Department of Education under President Bush has doubled in size and its average bureaucrat now makes $90,000 a year. "There are so many duplicate programs (in the federal government), it's crazy."

"After being in the majority for 12 years, they (the Republicans) were fat and happy," he said. "The American people realized it and threw them out."

Wow! Even Republicans are running against the Republican Party these days.

It made me wonder if aliens had invaded the body of this normally rock-ribbed conservative Republican.

Go read the whole piece but here's some more for when the link dies:

When he spoke to us, he wore the standard conservative blue blazer, blue shirt and wine-colored tie. At his age, he looked more like an insurance salesman than a member of Congress.

He didn't come across as the rabid partisan that is his reputation. Instead, he was funny, charming and down to earth. After an hour's give-and-take, I found I liked him personally, even though we probably wouldn't agree on which hymn to sing in church.

McHenry answered many of our questions by lambasting his congressional colleagues, but he ducked or fumbled a few of the big issues of the day, such as health insurance and Iraq.

Example: Someone asked about some friends who could not afford their prescription drugs. Why couldn't they buy them cheaper from Canada, she asked. McHenry said it was a trade and safety issue.

"You don't want jobs to go overseas, but you want to go overseas to buy products," he pointed out. He did not mention that, according to the Washington Post, China already manufactures $675 million worth of prescription drugs sold in America.

Another example: I asked if he thinks democracy will survive long-term in Iraq. McHenry said he has no opinion, which is perhaps honest but unhelpful. If you don't think the Iraqi people are capable of keeping a democracy after we leave, what is the point of even one more American dying there?

McHenry said he thought people were willing to give President Bush the benefit of the doubt until Katrina. Then they saw governmental "incompetence," and Bush's poll numbers began to plummet.

Back to criticizing Congress, McHenry joked that his colleagues had introduced 46 different bills to change the names of local post offices and federal buildings. He did not mention he rose in the House recently in praise of the Overmountain Jamboree and Barbecue Cook-Off in Burke County.

Sunday, November 25, 2007

Traditional media pimps for our scandal-ridden Pat

The Washington Post, the Hill, and the Charlotte Observer's McClatchy DC correspondent appear to be in the business of providing crisis management PR services for embattled incumbent Pat McHenry.

I've only been covering the Republican hatchet man since February and already there on three occasions, major publications have done (apparently) for free what PR crisis specialists would charge tens or even hundreds of thousands to accomplish.

In May, when McHenry staffer and housemate Michael Aaron Lay was indicted for voter fraud (by the Republican District Attorney who had donated to McHenry's campaign), the Charlotte Observer's DC McClatchy correspondent wrote a long complimentary piece quoting numerous McHenry allies spewing his trumped-up defense that the felony indictment was a political attack. She listed not one fact to back this McHenry revision of reality. She did not quote one detractor from the district (Republican or Democrat) or even try to contact the DA McHenry's donors slandered.

This summer, when McHenry was massacred on the House floor for two weeks of his typical obstructionist hypocrisy (this time on earmarks), the Washington Post took up his defense. The Sleuth wrote an extremely nauseating puff piece about his youth and dating preferences concurrent with a completely inaccurate attack on all Democrats by Bob Novak who somehow managed to elevate McHenry's hypocrisy to saintly martyrdom.

This fall, when McHenry was under fire for his endless financial improprieties by the subscription-only Roll Call, The Hill wrote about the youth and inexperience of his new staff members with no mention of why his experienced and over 25 staffers might be leaving en masse. Or why the guy many refer to as McHorny prefers them so young.

Here's more:

Lisa Zagaroli's long love epistle in the Charlotte Observer covered everything from her professional opinion of his manners to a series of defensive attacks from his local and DC allies. According to the only district sources Lisa bothered to talk to, the entire indictment was a political attack. She didn't mention that the prosecutor had donated to his campaign and no affiliation to his primary opponent.

Zagaroli quotes no McHenry detractors (Republican or Democratic) from North Carolina. Not one. In the entire piece the only negative quote comes from Barney Frank, someone who would obviously not get much respect in the working class conservative district McHenry represents.

Check out these beauts, the first in her own assessment:
Dependably polite -- he opens doors, greets the U.S. Capitol police officers, hugs his waitress . . .
Apparently, she hadn't seen all the nasty clips on YouTube from the House floor where he interrupts fellow Congressman, calls Democrats cheaters. I guess from DC she can't get free to bop down to North Carolina and watch him interrupt and savage constituents when they ask questions he doesn't want to answer. I wonder if she used talking points from McHenry's communications director when to come up with the word "dependable" to modify the lie, "polite."

And this is what she chose to write the twerp say about himself. I think criminals should memorize this for use the next time they're investigated by the police:
"I had to grab for my food against my older brothers and sisters," the Cherryville Republican says laughing. "It's a natural part of my personality and upbringing. Get in there and fight for what you believe in."
And this is from neighboring Republican Congressman Robin Hayes:
Big Mac. He's got lots of spunk. He raises issues that need to be raised. He will defend his position enthusiastically, but with proper decorum and dignity.
The only question that remains is whether she's paid separately for this crap or is it part of her job description.

Of course, we could ask the same question of the Mary Ann Akers (the Sleuth) at WaPo. Her even more egregious ET-like interview came right when McHenry had finally gotten a long-overdue comeuppance by the entire House of Representatives.

After a two-week extended classic House floor performance piece, even Republicans had had enough of his ranting and obstructionism. The subject: transparency in earmarks. The hypocrisy for Democrats: McHenry's two-week rant neglected to mention that the earmark scandal had reached epoch proportions under the last 6 years or Republican hegemony. The hypocrisy even Republicans couldn't ignore: McHenry was hiding his own $129,000 grant to a Christmas Tree store in Spruce Pine, NC. So it was one of the few earmarks ever voted down, 249 to 174.

But the Sleuth didn't bother to mention it. Here's what she did mention:
. . . [McHenry] has also gotten buckets of praise and support from his elder fellow conservatives.

When he's not throwing bombs on the House floor, McHenry, 31, is anything but snarly. In a chat with the Sleuth in his office, the self-deprecating and mischievous McHenry talked to us about his role as floor warrior and baby of the House and his thankfulness for prematurely graying hair. And he reluctantly answered a question about what he's looking for in the wife he hasn't found yet.
"Buckets of praise?" Is that some kind of professional measurement that non-reporters never learn about?

And check out the wife question. Again, one sees the imprint of a communications director controlling the course of an interview. It seems unlikely that she came up with that line of questioning all on her own. In fact, it's completely absurd. Not only did Akers ignore the rampant rumors of his sexuality from well-known DC blogs like Wonkette and BlogActive and DownWithTyranny, she fed right into McHenry's phony cover.

And her article was part of a one-two punch that day. Columnist and traitor Bob Novak called McHenry a martyr elsewhere in the Post that day over the loss of that local earmark, one would suppose, in the cause of some phony perverted version of conservativism.

This is how the Center for American Progress characterized the Republican earmark PR effort:
The great conservative spin machine that stretches from the White House Press Room across the various right-wing think tanks to Fox News and dozens of conservative columnists and talk show hosts has amassed an impressive list of accomplishments over the years. But none of the efforts by this vast echo chamber is more impressive than the recent attempt to reshape the Bush White House and their allies in Congress as opponents of the practice of placing earmarks in federal spending legislation.
So, printing Novak's commentary in addition to the Sleuth's basically confirms WaPo as a PR machine for that entire Republican two-week lie:
A conservative firebrand, McHenry had immobilized the House and humiliated the Democrats by leading GOP parliamentary maneuvers to force transparency regarding earmarks, previously hidden by both parties.
The Sleuth not only failed to mention that concurrent earmark humiliation, she drooled over him with conversations like this:
Sleuth: Do you have time for dating? What's it like being a 31-year-old single guy in the House?

McHenry: [Laughter] I try to make time for that. It's just difficult with the schedule and everything else. I'm, uh, just trying to, I'm still trying to find the right girl. And I think in all due time it'll work out.

Sleuth: And is there a certain set of criteria you're looking for?

McHenry: Sure.

Sleuth: What is it?

McHenry: A number of things. [Laughter]

Sleuth: Just give me a little example. Does she have to like NASCAR? I hear you're a big NASCAR fan.

McHenry: Well, look, half the NASCAR teams are in my district. Dale Earnhardt Jr. is a constituent. Dale Jarrett. So I don't know, you don't really have a litmus test on that. I think when you meet the right girl, you know. At least that's what all my friends tell me.
Was Akers aware of the controversy and her part in the PR coverup? If she wasn't, she should have been. Fire her for incompetence or reveal her supplemental income source.

The most recent case of puff piece coverage when scandal erupts came after Roll Call gave McHenry a well-deserved slapdown for his numerous financial irregularities.

When I saw that The Hill had done an article, I figured they were doing some kind of follow-up, right? Hah. No, The Hill posted an embarrassingly naive piece over how he's recently hired a whole new staff of young people who have little experience.

No mention why his previous staff might have left his scandal-ridden incumbency. They apparently didn't notice that as a southerner it's kind of odd to hire people from Massachusetts and Arizona. I bet the unemployed from his district would find that interesting. But then to talk about how hard it is for him to find staff, they would have to mention that no one with any experience or intelligence would want his name on their resume. So, of course he had to go to the far corners of the country to find some naive evangelicals who will most likely abandon him after the first sex party.
In the wake of last month’s office shake-up, four young aides assumed new positions on Rep. Patrick McHenry’s (R-N.C.) Capitol Hill team.
And one can't help but notice that Pat prefers them under 25. I'm sure no one in the traditional or "mainstream" media wants to touch that with a ten-foot pole . . . or even a keyboard.

Will the 10th's Republican primary take it's cue from SC?

Is this what we have to look forward to? McHenry's surrounds himself with people who use the same dirty tactics as the Atwater types referred to in this New Republic article.

Go read the whole piece for a good overview of how the Republican party operates at a national level. Remember the last Republican primary? McHenry never stopped the lying and dirty tricks. This spring, politics in the 10th District could be a blood sport if Lance Sigmon announces.
The dirty work of South Carolina politics is conducted by a small crew of operatives who studied at Atwater's elbow. "All of us in this state directly or indirectly trained under him," says Rod Shealy, a veteran GOP consultant not aligned with any campaign. Atwater instilled in his followers a sense of politics as a game with no rules -- one in which treachery was a virtue and not a vice. "People here wear dirty tricks like a badge of honor," says Ragley. They are an irascible lot, often rumpled and wearing garb like Hawaiian shirts and safari hats. "They're really unkempt and eccentric - not like Charleston white boys in boat shoes and bow ties," says one local Democrat. South Carolina operatives tend to congregate in joints with names like the Lizard's Thicket and the Back Porch (co-owned by the son of McCain's consultant Richard Quinn, in fact). Many also have sketchy histories. Shealy himself was once convicted of violating campaign laws after he convinced a black man facing felony charges to join a statewide campaign; the plan was to drive up white voter turnout in favor of Shealy's sister, who was a candidate. Quinn has his association with Southern Partisan. And, to some, the recent anonymous e-mails about Romney recalled a 2002 incident involving Quinn's employee, Trey Walker, John McCain's state campaign manager, who was caught sending an unflattering article about a local candidate from an e-mail address meant to seem like it belonged to Shealy. So goes the internecine world of South Carolina politics.
Here's some more tidbits:
Shortly before a Republican presidential primary debate in Columbia, South Carolina, this last May, several conservative activists in the state received mysterious envelopes in the mail. The letters arrived anonymously, each one containing an eight-page document, a typewritten manifesto with a pseudo-academic title: "Mormons in Contemporary American Society: A Politically Dangerous Religion?" The letters depicted Mormonism as based on "hoaxes" and ridiculed the church's founder, Joseph Smith, as a "gold digger turned prophet." The mailing also provocatively dubbed Smith "the Mohammed of the West." "Like the prophet of Islam," it said, "Smith founded his religion upon prophecies and revelations which commanded him to become a polygamist and warlord. Many centuries apart, these two men became the focal point of large religions that blurred the lines between religion, war, domestic life and politics." The letters also suggested that Mormons take direct orders from church leaders. They didn't have to name him to make it clear whom they were targeting: Republican presidential candidate - and devout Mormon - Mitt Romney.

This being South Carolina, the Romney camp assumed a rival campaign had sent the letter. After all, this wasn't the first subterranean attack on their candidate. Just before a March GOP straw poll in Spartanburg, someone using the e-mail address mass-mailed a missive titled, "Mitt Romney has a family secret he doesn't want you to know." "Those dark suspicions you hide deep inside yourself about Mormonism are trying to tell you something, " it read. "Trust your instincts! ... The light of truth will burn through the smoke and mirrors of Mitt Romney's movie star looks and crafty words!" The e-mails arrived around the same time as another anonymous letter, a six-page diatribe titled "Mitt Romney: Say anything to get elected," which ripped the former Massachusetts governor for his positions on abortion, gun control, and "conservative values."

Romney is hardly the innocent victim, though. In September, just as Fred Thompson was preparing to enter the Republican presidential field, appeared. The website was equal parts sophomoric parody and character assassination. Its home page featured an absurd image of Thompson in a period costume with a frilly scarf and gilded jacket (presumably from an acting role). Another photograph featured a grinning shot of the Tennessean surrounded, via Photoshop, by several women to whom he's been romantically linked. The site directed viewers to dirt on Thompson via links with such titles as HOLLYWOOD FRED, WASHINGTON FRED, TRIAL LAWYER FRED, MORON FRED, and PLAYBOY FRED. "[W]e figured it was about time that we did a little research into what Fred Thompson (not Arthur Branch) really stands for," explained a welcome message on the site, referring to the character Thompson plays on "Law & Order." But The Washington Post did a little research, too, and traced the site to the consulting firm of Warren Tompkins, perhaps the top political operative in South Carolina - and a consultant to the Romney campaign.
This is just a small sample of the kind of stuff McHenry did to David Huffman in 04, to Hillary Clinton's Senate campaign when McHenry worked for Karl Rove, and what McHenry did to get his friend, Glenn Murphy elected as head of College Republicans. (Remember Glenn Murphy? He's the guy who gives unwanted blowjobs to sleeping visitors. He'd done it before McHenry tried to strong arm his election and he did it afterwards, too, and had to resign.)

Wednesday, November 21, 2007

BushCo judges protecting corrupt types like our Pat

Down With Tyranny has noted that BushCo has stacked the courts so effectively that his appointees are gutting the system that could have brought down future corruption.

From the Washington Post:
A little-noticed aspect of an appellate court decision could sharply limit investigations of members of Congress and hamper ongoing corruption probes, the Justice Department said this week in a motion seeking an emergency stay of the ruling.

The decision by the U.S. Court of Appeals for the District of Columbia Circuit was handed down in August in the case of Rep. William J. Jefferson (D-La.), but its effects complicate other investigations, including those stemming from the Jack Abramoff lobbying scandal. Justice Department lawyers said in their motion that the appellate ruling represents an "unprecedented expansion" of the "speech or debate" clause of the Constitution, which was intended to protect legislators from intimidation under civil or criminal law. They said the decision calls into question the legality of investigative tools such as wiretapping, searches of home offices and voluntary interviews of congressional staffers.

All those methods have been employed by the department in ongoing investigations of current and former members of Congress, many of them over dealings with Abramoff.

So, Pat, during all your attacks on Dems over earmark transparency you were hiding your own Christmas tree earmark. Then we find out from our FEC files that during all your rants about Democrats wanting to hide the values of their homes, you were hiding two homes and illegally not reporting another land assets. And we know you love to scream and whine and moan about corruption and here the judges appointed by your man friend, George, are protecting you from future investigation and prosecution.

What about investigation and prosecution scares you the most, Pat? Your ties to Abramoff? Or your pandering for Blackwater? Or just for all the real estate "deals" you keep getting with your corrupt bidness buddies in your own district.

What else are you and your friends trying to hide? To answer that question I guess I should just check out your current rant. It seems that to get your talking point for the day, you just look in the mirror.

Here's a few 'graphs from Down with Tyranny
What do Jerry Lewis (R-CA), Tom Delay (R-TX), Ken Calvert (R-CA), Tom Feeney (R-FL), John Doolittle (R-CA), Denny Hastert (R-IL), Heather Wilson (R-NM), Gary Miller (R-CA), Patrick McHenry (R-NC), Virgil Goode (R-VA), Don Young (R-AK), Ted Stevens (R-AK) and a dozen other crooked Republican lawmakers have in common today? They're all celebrating an appellate court decision that the Justice Department says will sharply limit investigations into their criminal activities.

Bush's incompetent and overly partisan appointments to the courts have ruined the entire justice system of the United States and the U.S. Court of Appeals for the District of Columbia is now an outgrowth of the neo-nazi outfit known as the Federalist Society. They are making it impossible to prosecute the overt criminal activities of bribe-taking congressmen by abusing statutes "intended to protect legislators from intimidation under civil or criminal law."

The Federalist Society court has ruled the Justice Department can't use evidence against the crooked Republicans that was obtained through court-approved wiretaps, searches of home offices and voluntary interviews of congressional staffers. Of the 10 current members of the court, seven are rabid right wing fanatics appointed by Reagan, Bush, Sr and, mostly Bush, Jr, who allowed the Federalist Society to dictate each nominee, none of whom faced any serious opposition from a collaborationist Senate.

The entire Republican Culture of Corruption case and the hundreds of millions of dollars involved in the Abramoff/Delay scams will be dismissed if the decision stands. And who will overrule it? Scalia? Thomas? Roberts? Alito? Not likely. The decision makes it nearly impossible to investigate crooked congressmen.

Thursday, November 15, 2007

McHenry votes against Head Start. Nice.

Is there any bill for children McHenry doesn't hate? Last month and the month before Pat voted against health care for children. (Children have already died because this program is underfunded.)

Now, he votes against the best supplemental educational program in history, Head Start.

From the Kerra Bolton at the NCDP yesterday

Today, North Carolina Representatives Patrick McHenry, Virginia Foxx and Howard Coble opposed strengthening the highly successful Head Start program, which gives almost 20,000 disadvantaged children in North Carolina a better chance to succeed in school.

The bill passed with strong bipartisan support, with only 32 members opposing the measure and 381 Republicans and Democrats supporting it.

“Our children are our state’s most important resource, and we should invest in their future by offering them the best early education possible,” said NCDP Chair Jerry Meek.

“But today, Republicans tried to make it harder for every child in North Carolina to get a better education, voting against the Head Start program which improves teacher quality and helps raise kids’ achievement in school,” Meek said.

Reps. McHenry, Foxx and Coble opposed the Improving Head Start for School Readiness Act Conference Report (HR 1429).

Tuesday, November 13, 2007

Mooresville visit pics; Daniel Johnson tours the district

Daniel Johnson poses with Fletcher McCrady on his 4th birthday.

Daniel Johnson's wife, Creecy, looks on with pride.

Photos by September McCrady.

McHenry votes for discrimination against LGBT

We knew he would. Vote against ENDA, that is. Vote against discrimination in the work place. Pat has never hid his disdain for people's privacy. But why?

This wonderful rant written by A Alexander in January gives some insight:
In as much as today's extremist Republican Party is the antithesis of everything the Founding Fathers believed in and embodied, and, too, in as much as they forsake the will of the people in order to perform the bidding of big business; indeed, in as much as they are the McPolitical party in their McCorporate-controlled version of McAmerica, it seems in someway wholly appropriate that their post-election spokesman would be a pathetic little pug-like political thug by the name of Patrick McHenry. Surely, the irony can be lost on no one.

. . .

McHenry hails from North Carolina's tenth district, and how proud they must be to have such a sad little troll representing their interests. It only requires one look to know all that there is to know about Patrick McHenry: He is the typical gay-hating, self-loathing, homosexual-desire-repressing, weekend male prostitute humping, and crank tweaking contemporary Republican Party member. McHenry, being a Republican, would never admit to his latent homosexual desires, but his anger and hate, like Hitler and Karl Rove's, is so violently intense that it can only be the bastard child of sexual self-loathing. And, how Patrick McHenry does hate!

. . .

Thinking back on the baseless and vicious manner in which McHenry blamed and assailed Democrats over the Foley scandal, one is reminded of the way that a person defends the honor of their secreted lover, and, too, the bitter need for revenge that such circumstances tend to engender. Within that context it makes sense, too, that McHenry's hatred toward Democrats has only grown more rabid over the intervening months.

Yes, it all makes sense now. Patrick McHenry is the typical gay-hating, self-loathing, homosexual-desire-repressing, weekend male prostitute humping, and crank tweaking contemporary Republican Party member whose one-time lover's dirty secret has been revealed to the world and now he has embarked upon a course of revenge. Indeed, that must be the circumstance that led to Patrick McHenry appearing on the House floor, following only the second day of the Democratic majority, and loosing the single-most hate-filled speech in the history of American self-governance.

For doing nothing more than the very things Republicans had done to them the entire twelve years of GOP rule, North Carolina's McHenry unleashed a virulent tirade against the Democrats, and, too, bizarrely attacked the Democratic Party for daring to balance the budget by having Congress pay for programs as they go - a system known as "pay-go."

McHenry's anger seemed completely out of context. It was as though he suffered from some strange emotional affective disorder. There the pug-like thug was - on the floor of the Peoples' House, as if he were suffering from a turret syndrome-like hate-based reflexive and uncontrollable tic: "the DEMOCRAT majority...the DEMOCRAT majority...the DEMOCRAT majority...," McHenry repeated over and over and over again. With each refusal to acknowledge the political opposition by their proper name -- "the DEMOCRATIC Party" -- the abhorrence swelled and built within Patrick McHenry's being until finally, when he said the words "the DEMOCRAT majority"; the hatred dripped from his lips like Mark Foley's spent semen.

And within that context, Patrick McHenry's hatred of the Democratic majority made perfect sense.

And within this context his vote for discrimination in the workplace makes perfect sense. It's voting against people who are in the minority of sexual preferences. And McHenry can't handle publicly supporting anyone who might being doing something in his or her private life of which Pat wants people to think he disapproves.

Saturday, November 10, 2007

Winning the 10th, how and why

How? We'll work on turnout in every single county. Why? Because we love our children.

Over 200 people showed up in Hickory yesterday to support Daniel Johnson's candidacy. Wooo hooo!! In his 10-county tour he was greeted by hundreds of residents of all political backgrounds, clamoring for chance.

But to achieve this change, we need everyone to work hard in every county. Burke, Cleveland and Catawba and Caldwell are obviously important. But even in small Republican counties every vote will help.

If you doubt what you can do to make a difference just watch this video from NCDP chair Jerry Meek. Substitute the name of your county for Richmond County and be inspired to do what you can to help:

Thanks for the vid to Bullydoc at BlueNC.

Wednesday, November 7, 2007

Friday: Daniel Johnson on 10-county tour

daniel_johnson_forweb.jpgHey folks, this will be fun. It's your first chance to press the flesh, ask questions, take photos, videos, etc. Well, if you're really quick about it!

From the campaign's press release:

Daniel Johnson Holds 10-County Announcement Tour

Johnson Will Travel to Every County in District to KickOff Campaign

Hickory, NC – Daniel Johnson announced today that he will travel to every county is North Carolina’s 10th Congressional District this Friday, November 9, 2007 to kickoff his campaign for U.S. Congress.

“This Friday, I will travel across the district to talk with voters about my campaign to represent the values of North Carolina with character and integrity,” said Johnson. “My decision to run for Congress is a continuation of my service to America and the people of North Carolina. As Veteran’s Day approaches, I am going to every county in the district to show the kind of bold leadership and bipartisan solutions I hope to bring to Congress.”

Mitchell County

9:30 am

Old County Courthouse

Main Street, Bakersville

Avery County :

10:30 am

Best Cellar Restaurant

3612 Mitchell Avenue, Linville

Caldwell County

11:30 am

Lenoir Library

120 Hospital Avenue, Lenoir

Catawba County :


Town Square, Hickory

Iredell County :

1:45 pm

Mooresville Town Hall
413 North Main Street, Mooresville

Lincoln County

2:30 pm

East Lincoln Community Center

8160 Optimist Club Rd. , Denver

Gaston County :

3:30 pm

VFW Post 5200

125 Fish Camp Rd. , Cherryville

Cleveland County :

4:15 pm

Old Courthouse

Court Square, Shelby

Rutherford County :

5:00 pm

County Courthouse

229 N Main Street , Rutherfordton

Burke County :

6:00 pm

Old Courthouse

Downtown Morganton

Tuesday, November 6, 2007

McHenry has "contentious relationship with democratic leadership"

It took the prospect of a primary challenger but finally the Charlotte Observer is writing what has been obvious from day one.

McHenry has lead the partisan whining and moaning since his first day in congress. Yet, when he comes back to the district (or in his virtual town hall) all you heard is "stop the partisan bickering." "There's too much partisan bickering." "The partisan bickering is hurting our country." Blah blah blah.

And today's CharO calls "breaking" what was written here and in the Hickory Record on Saturday (that Hickory attorney Lance Sigmon is considering a primary run against lil Pat). But who are we to complain when they are finally writing the truth about the diminutive whiner:
Sigmon, 48, said he's concerned that the 10th District doesn't have adequate representation. He said incumbent U.S. Rep. Patrick McHenry, R-N.C., has a contentious relationship with Democratic leadership in Congress.

"They're going to be less inclined to hear what he has to say," Sigmon said. "There comes a time when you have to pick your battles."
I wonder if this is precursor to an endorsement . . . wouldn't that upset the Republican applecart.

Sunday, November 4, 2007

Dear NC Christian Coalition chair: what are you and Pat hiding?

Hi, Jeff, Mr. NC Christian Coalition Chair. Thanks for writing me.

My name is Leslie. Leslie Bland. I put it in the first post on this blog but people like you kept calling me and sending me frightening emails so I removed it.

But it's no secret. I've posted my name at all the blogs where I write. But thanks for not hiding your name in the email you sent me. Gee, I never would have known that it was from an ardent McHenry supporter had you not identified yourself:
from jeff lominac
10:51 am (2½ hours ago)
date Oct 31, 2007 10:51 AM

Why do you not say who you are and show your face ? It is like you are hiding behind this drama queen name and do not want anyone to know who you are . Are you ashamed to show your face and let people know who you are ? What are you hiding ? The Drama King
I also gave my name and my affiliation to this blog to the receptionist at Pat's Congressional Office on the Hill. You know, when I went there a few months ago asking for a list of the questions Pat refused to answer at his virtual town hall.

Since you are chair of the North Carolina Christian Coalition, I want to know what you are hiding.

Why was Donnie Young removed? Was it because he was uncovering Pat McHenry's hypocrisies or because he has shown an interest in running against McHenry?

And, no, I'm not ashamed of anything I have done to expose Patrick McHenry's lies and hypocrisies. What are you ashamed of?

Since you're friends with Pat, perhaps you can tell us why he keeps distorting his financial reports and associating with people charged with DUI, voter fraud, assault and other legal problems. What do they know about him that makes him feel he must hire them instead of ethical employees. What is he hiding?

FYI: Here's the actual email I sent Jeff for which I have not received a reply:
Hi Jeff,

I have posted my name in many places and in the original first post of Pat Go Bye Bye.

However, I got many strange emails and then phone calls to an unlisted number so I removed my name and the strangeness stopped.

I'm not ashamed of what I'm doing. Are you?

Leslie Bland

Saturday, November 3, 2007

Lt Col takes on Pat, maybe

Looks like Pat might have a contested primary. And after all that work just last month trying to convince us resistance to his incumbency would be futile.

Former military judge, retired Lieutenant Colonel Lance Sigmon told the Hickory Daily Record his primary challenge to Big Pat is "very likely."

Here's Sigmon's law practice website.

Here's more from the Hickory Record:
Lance Sigmon, 48, a retired U.S. Air Force officer, said he’s in the process of forming an exploratory committee to seek the Tenth District office
No specific reason why he's running except:
“We deserve a representative who understands the values of this area and will make decisions based on the integrity and principles that I learned while growing up here,” Sigmon said.

Here's his background:
Sigmon, a Republican, grew up in a working-class family in Conover and graduated from Newton-Conover High School in 1977.

. . .

Sigmon served four years in the Air Force following high school. He graduated from Western Carolina University in 1985 and received a law degree from Wake Forest University in 1988. Sigmon re-entered the Air Force as an officer and was appointed as a judge advocate.

. . .

He held several positions and retired as a military trial judge with the rank of lieutenant colonel.
And, one more ouch for Pat:
After 21 years in the military, he returned to the Hickory area in 2005 and noticed an economic decline and decreasing quality of life.

I wonder what Sigmon knows about Pat that makes him run for office in what is sure to be the ugliest primary ever . . . I wonder if those rumored photos will finally surface.

And, gee, Pat next to a real military man it might not look so good for you to pretend to have served in Iraq like that time you misled WaPo.

And after trying to smear one military man in a primary, won't it be awfully suspicious when (if you cheat enough to win) you go after another one, a decorated hero, Daniel Johnson, in the general?

Crossposted at Scru Hoo and BlueNC.