Monday, April 28, 2008

McHenry's legal threat backfires

Stupid Pat. He originally skated through his "two-bit" scandal with mostly favorable local coverage (or no coverage at all!)

But the dull-witted one just couldn't be happy having avoided almost every local paper covering that he 1) called a Green Zone military guard "two-bit," 2) then posted an unauthorized video showing where insurgent bombs had fallen, after which 3) insurgents (who may or may not be connected to the insurgents in item 2) scored a direct hit exactly where McHenry showed them on the video. That direct hit killed two, including a colonel, and injured 17.

So, not only did Pat's legal threats intimidate Republican opponent Lance Sigmon not at all, but they also led to a reiteration district-wide of McHenry's "Iraq-two-bit-comment-video-post-and-subsequent-deadly-bombing" debacle.

According to the Hickory Daily Record:
Last week, Democratic U.S. Rep. Jim Marshall of Georgia said there is no way McHenry’s video aided the enemy. Marshall was on the trip with McHenry.

Williams’ letter states the troop locations assertion is false and the video did not cause the death of two Americans. Williams letter said several issues on the video are false and aimed at “smearing Representative McHenry’s reputation.”

Sigmon said the ad did not make that assertion, only that the deaths occurred after the airing of the video on McHenry’s Web site. Shortly after placing the video on his Web site, McHenry took it down. After removing the video, members of McHenry’s staff contacted the U.S. Defense Department and were told it would be best not to post the video again.

Providing the location and damage of enemy fire is not allowed, according to military officials.
Pretty funny that he's relying on some obscure Georgia rep no one has heard of to defend him. Gee, I wonder why there's no one from the military who can assure us that he did no harm? Vet's Voice, a website for Iraq War veterans, has some opinions on that.

Here's the letter that prove McHenry's lawyers have little understanding of the nature of libel, slander and public figures.

And, just for a laugh, check out McHenry Rocks. Too bad Blogger is free or we could prove this is not a McHenry fan but a McHenry employee. They'd have to report the payment. But, get real. It's blatantly obvious that the only fans McHenry has are people he's paying or people he lives with!

Sunday, April 27, 2008

Sigmon better than McHenry, Barely...

So Pat finally agreed to debate Sigmon. Sigmon still gets points for not violating national security, but his answers in the debate held in Lincoln County make me question if this is an "out of the frying pan, into the fire" situation. You can see the answers to the debates in this Shelby Star article. I am especially concerned with Sigmon's answers about fighting universal health care. The article did not mention if he has another solution to the problem. I guess it is clear the only real answer is to vote for Daniel Johnson in November.

Thursday, April 24, 2008

McHenry's PAC Paid for Lay's Defense

According to Roll Call, a subscription-only Capitol Hill daily, Patrick McHenry used PAC funds intended for to pay for the the legal defense of Michael Aaron Lay, his former staffer and roomie convicted of voter fraud while living and working for him.

According to Wikipedia,
In the US, a political action committee, or PAC, is the name commonly given to a private group, regardless of size, organized to elect or defeat government officials or to promote or defeat legislation.
So, voter fraud is political action organized to elect government officials. So, it's all okay, right?

Here's a link.
Thanks, Boss. Rep. Patrick McHenry (R-N.C.) recently gave Michael Aaron Lay $10,000 to beat back voter fraud charges brought while the former campaign aide worked for the now-Member.

According to recent Federal Election Commission filings, McHenry gave Lay $5,000 out of his political action committee, More Conservatives PAC, in two payments during February and March.

The contributions were labeled “legal expense donation[s].” McHenry had given Lay another $10,000 in July 2007.
Last August Lay got a bizarre "deferrred prosecution" deal for the voter fraud charges. If he pays some fines, does some community service and stays out of trouble, prosecutor Locke Bell said he'd dismiss the charges, leaving the Tennessee Law School student free to pursue the bar.

No wonder Lay was smiling at his last court appearance. It all worked out pretty well for him, don't you think? He breaks the law, gets to walk, and doesn't even have to pay for his own lawyer. And Pat's pretty happy I'm sure. Remember, he needed every extra vote. That election was the one he won by only 86 votes.

Boy o boy, Pat. Things are getting uglier and uglier for you these days. I wonder what else are you hiding.

Tuesday, April 22, 2008

Desperately Stupid Pat Threatens Lawsuit Over Sigmon Ad

Could this guy be any more boneheaded? Great thinking, dunder-wonder. Give the traditional press something to write about just when the story had died. Remind them of your calling a Green Zone guard "two-bit" and then putting up a banned Green Zone video which may have lead to two deaths, including that of a colonel.

Oh, and yes, make sure even more people pay attention to the ad that calls for you to serve your ten years in prison!

This is from the CharO, historically your most supportive rag:

The controversy began last month when McHenry, a two-term lawmaker, returned from his first trip to Iraq.

In a speech to local Republicans, he said he'd tried to get into a gym near the U.S. embassy in Baghdad but was turned away by a "two-bit security guard." Then, he posted a video of himself in the Green Zone talking about how close enemy rocket attacks had come while he was there.

McHenry voluntarily pulled the video after a veterans group criticized him for giving away intelligence that it said could have aided terrorist groups to strike more accurately.

Sigmon last week called for an investigation into whether McHenry endangered Americans' lives by detailing the success of enemy attacks

Way to go, Patty!!!

Winston-Salem Journal

Raleigh N&O


Friday, April 18, 2008

Sigmon Calls for Congressional Investigation

Good idea, Lance. Why hasn't any Democratic congressman thought of it? It's not like McHenry holds the purse strings like NC-11's Charles Taylor used to.

Hey Democrats, what's your excuse? Get off your duffs and go after this anti-patriot.

Thursday, April 17, 2008

For a Laugh (even though the subject's not all that funny)

From Jesus' General himself. I've cut and pasted more than I should have. You'll have to go right to the post to read the priceless comments.

Tuesday, April 15, 2008
The impotence of being almost earnest
Rep. Patrick McHenry
Founder, Rep. McHenry's Hostel for Strapping Young Republican Lads

Dear Rep. McHenry,

It surprises me that so few people understand just how important you are. After all, you are a Congressman. That's important. You're also the go-to-guy for strapping, young, Republican lads who need a bed for the night. That's important. You've been tied to a multiple-murder investigation involving homosexual prostitutes and organized crime figures. That's important too. So why don't people see you that way?

I know it's not your fault. You've tried very hard to publicize your importance. In just the last few weeks alone, you bragged to an audience at a Republican dinner that you had berated a security guard in Iraq. And then there's that video you put up on your website--the one in which you proved your importance my broadcasting all the secret operational military information you had.

But, unfortunately, it doesn't seem to be working. If anything, it's backfired. Your own local newspapers are calling for your head.

We need to turn that around. Below, you'll find my suggestions for other ways to make yourself seem important.

Gp to the post to read his excellent suggestions (and for links to the very real and not-so-funny sources. I recommend the one about Lindsey Graham for the not-easily -offended.

Sunday, April 13, 2008

Straw Poll results from Newton Conover

micandacam has promised to report on the event. But for now here are the results from scharrison at BlueNC
Presidential Race
Candidate % of Votes
Obama 54
Clinton 43
Edwards 3
Biden Single write-in vote

US Senate Race
Candidate % of Votes
Neal 53
Hagan 47

Commissioner of Labor
Candidate % of Votes
Anderson 57
Donnan 37
Richardson 6

State Auditor
Candidate % of Votes
Wood 63
Atkins 37

Insurance Commissioner
Candidate % of Votes
Goodwin 87
Smith 13

Gubernatorial Race
Candidate % of Votes
Perdue 53
Moore 47

Lt. Governor Race
Candidate % of Votes
Smathers 38
Besse 27
Dalton 24
Dellenger 10

State Treasurer
Candidate % of Votes
Cowell 48
Weisel 38
Young 14

Superintendent of Public Instruction
Candidate % of Votes
Atkinson 90
Davis 10

Wednesday, April 9, 2008

McHenry Endangers Troops, Then Blames Them

Earlier this week, McHenry posted a video that violated Green Zone military security in Iraq and may have led to several deaths, including that of a colonel.

Now, according to the Charlotte Observer, he's blaming the Pentagon for not briefing him. But the Pentagon is contradicting him.
A Pentagon spokesman said he didn't know what McHenry was told in Iraq, "but we routinely brief our operational rules to our visitors in Iraq and Afghanistan."

"We do not as a matter of policy discuss attacks in a way that would provide the enemy any better understanding of the effectiveness of their attacks," said Lt. Col. Todd Vician.
VoteVets has called on congress to censure him for endangering troops
And Brandon Friedman, vice president of Vote Vets has suggestedMcHenry resign and enlist:
And frankly, at this point, members of the military are tired of covering for these chickenhawk wannabe-heroes who go around looking for glory the easy way. We're tired of them starting wars they can't finish and we're disgusted with their enthusiasm to use a military which they don't understand in the slightest.

To be quite honest, it's only because McHenry is a Congressman that the Pentagon and MNF-Iraq spokesmen were so lenient with him.

If Patrick McHenry wants to tell war stories so badly, he should resign his Congressional seat and go enlist. He's only 32. That way, he could get some training--so that next time he's in a combat zone trying to be a tough guy, he won't be such a bumbling, self-promotional fool about it.
Again here are the initial remarks about his visit to Baghdad that started McHenry's downward spiral:
And so in the morning, I got up early — not that I make this a great habit — but I went to the gym because I just couldn’t sleep and everything else. Well, sure enough, the guard wouldn’t let me in. Said I didn’t have the correct credentials. It’s 5:00 in the morning. I haven’t had sleep. I was not very happy with this two-bit security guard. So you know, I said, “I want to see your supervisor.”
Support Daniel Johnson.

Write a letter to the editor using the links on the upper left.

Tuesday, April 8, 2008

McHenry Violates Green Zone Military Security

I can't say it any better than this headline at Alternet: "GOP Rep Reveals Details of Green Zone Attack; Did he Get U.S. Soldiers Killed?"

From Vet Voice, (an website by American veterans of Iraq and Afghanistan):
In an effort to bolster his own national security credentials in the midst of "Sniper-gate," Congressman Patrick McHenry (R-NC) gave away intelligence information last week that could have aided Shi'ite militias and/or other terrorist organizations in targeting the Green Zone. Only two days after McHenry promoted a video of himself in the Green Zone describing in detail the effectiveness of the rocket attacks on Easter Sunday, the area was hit with a barrage that killed two U.S. soldiers and wounded 17 others. It was the deadliest attack on the Green Zone so far this year.
The backstory: McHenry spoke at a Lincoln County event of how he was turned away from the Iraq Green Zone gym. He went on to describe an attack during his visit. Here's the video of him calling the military sentry "two-bit," and going on to describe a rocket attack while he was in the Green Zone.

The campaign of Republican opponent Lance Sigmon contested Pat's version of events, quoting a Pentagon spokesman who said, according to the Sigmon website:
the facts were somewhat different, emphasizing that there were no fatalities from that rocket attack.
As the mainstream media picked up the two stories, McHenry defended himself using a video posted at his official Congressional website. According to Thoreau at BlueNC:
The video shows McHenry right after the blast in front of an unnamed structure, describing the events of the blast- including some key information about not only what in the Green Zone was hit, but explaining his current position as smoke rose behind him.
From Vet Voice:
In a post earlier this morning, I detailed how 32-year-old Congressman Patrick McHenry (R-NC) had not only violated OPSEC procedures while in Iraq, but also endangered American troops located in the Green Zone. McHenry--a fervent war supporter who has never served in the military--was apparently content to promote his Baghdad adventures at the expense of U.S. troops on his Congressional website, during public appearances, and on YouTube.

He did this until he got called out today.

Once the video started appearing on sites like VetVoice, The Huffington Post, and AlterNet, McHenry's office immediately removed the video from both YouTube and his website, leaving the sites above with dead links. It's unclear as to whether McHenry had the video pulled out of a sense of new-found responsibility to America's Armed Forces, or whether he just thinks he can sweep the fact under the rug that he got caught trying to burnish his own foreign policy credentials at the expense of troops serving in combat. Calls to his office requesting information on the reason were not answered, as none were attempted until after close of business this afternoon.
Vet Voice's Brandon Friedman (whose post was picked up at Alternet) tries to give McHenry the benefit of the doubt, that perhaps his mistakes are honest and caused by ignorance, not malice. But even people who don't know McHenry's pathetic, hypocritical history are having trouble making excuses.
I'd like to think that Congressman McHenry realized what he did wrong and that he feels genuine remorse. However, if that were the case, I would have expected an apology to have been issued in conjunction with the removal of the video--though none was. That leads me to believe that McHenry pulled the video because he's more worried about the damage this could do to him politically--not because he's concerned about how his actions could affect the troops or their families.
Here's more from Thoreau at BlueNC
The irony? Patrick McHenry has previously bashed ABC news and other groups for giving out key information online... just as he just did. In fact, he was quoted as saying the following:

In a carefully worded request, seven House GOP lawmakers led by Rep. Patrick McHenry, R-N.C., asked the House Oversight and Government Reform Committee to "look into the releasing of sensitive information and its impact on the security of our nation, the performance of our government agencies, and the viability of our diplomatic relationships overseas."
Since the video is rightfully no longer available here's Huffington Post's transcript:
McHENRY: Good morning. You see, right over my back here (points), there was a rocket attack this morning. According to our folks here, there were eleven rockets, uh, one hit just over my head, another hit a parking lot, and another hit the gym. Well, interestingly enough, I wasn't able to get into the gym this morning because I didn't have an ID that was appropriate. And so I was escorted back to the room and just a few minutes later, that's when the rocket attacks occurred. So, uh, small wonders. . .what a small blessing. . .a big blessing on Easter Sunday morning. So, thanks so much.
But will the people of North Carolina's 10th district boot this loser? As a DFA staffer wrote: For Republicans the Rules Don't Apply.

Support Daniel Johnson. Write a letter to the editor. 10th District press is failing to cover this story adequately. (See list of newspaper LTE links in left column.)

Friday, April 4, 2008

Wanna "weekend retreat" with McHorny?

Got $9200? You'll be part of Congressman Patrick McHenry's "Congressional Circle." Your benefits include "Private Washington, DC retreat" with Pat, including "meals and a reception." And what else????

It also gets you a"two complimentary tickets to all campaign events" and the "Annual McHenry Christmas Party," "free subscription" to an exciting campaign newsletter called the McHenry Campaign Insider (a fiction writer wouldn't make this stuff up), a commemorative pin," and (not last and not least) a semiannual conference call "update."

And supposedly campaign contributions don't buy access.

(Click on graphics and keep clicking for larger versions.)



What I want to know is what will it cost to get me a weekend with DUI staffer Brett Keeter and how many diamonds does he rate.

Cross posted at BlueNC and ScruHoo.

Thursday, April 3, 2008

McHenry "stacking the district" with incompetent allies?

That's what news@norman is saying:
McHenry has been stacking the district with his puppets for several years in a power-grabbing machine-building scheme that is alienating many in the party, including a number of folks in East Lincoln who are now leaning towards McHenry’s opponent, Lance Sigmon.
He has more to say about insider Republicans:
While the primary campaign is beginning to heat up, Mitchem, Funderburk and McConnell reportedly had their pictures made with the Pillsbury Doughboy (aka McHenry) at a recent county GOP function.

That makes it appear to me as though the young, abrasive congressman is giving them the wink-wink in the GOP primary against more intelligent, thoughtful and community-minded candidates.

Tuesday, April 1, 2008

McHenry calls green zone soldier guard "two-bit"

Can't make this stuff up.

And, apparently, his story about a nearby rocket attack doesn't jive with the official military either. From Sigmon for Congress:
However, official U.S. Embassy spokesman Philip T. Reeker said the facts were somewhat different, emphasizing that there were no fatalities from that rocket attack.

[Ed note: it was a guard and not an American military soldier so I've corrected the headline.]