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Thursday, March 04, 2010

McHenry's McGuffin 

We got an e-mailed press release last night from one of Congressman Patrick McHenry's three primary challengers that apparently agreed with our characterization of the congressman's tone-deafness for introducing a bill to put Ronald Reagan on the $50 bill. Here 'tis in its entirety:
Morganton, NC -- Vance Patterson, 10th District Republican candidate for Congress, says incumbent Patrick McHenry is up to the old tricks "professional politicians" play in election years. McHenry has recently proposed legislation to put Ronald Reagan's picture on the $50 bill.

"To use a great American like Ronald Reagan to get votes in an economically devastated district is nothing short of shameful," Patterson said. "13.6% of our neighbors don't have a $50 bill to look at because they are unemployed."

Patterson prides himself for running a grassroots campaign focused on jobs and term limits. "This proves my point about professional politicians and imposing term limits," Patterson said. "At election time, they suddenly descend on the voters with emotional appeals and irrational actions. Well, 10th district voters know when a politician is grandstanding rather than leading to improve the district and the country."

A successful businessman, Patterson insists that he is running on a platform of "Real World Leadership" and can make a difference.

"It's time to restore core principles to America, and our district voters know that," he said. "I've been busy meeting fellow citizens and they are ready for real leadership in developing a better economy, outstanding education, and affordable health care."

Other than the I-worship-the-false-god-Reagan meme, this could have been written by the Democratic candidate in the NC-10 ... the emphasis on working-class struggles, education, and "affordable health care," none of which Ronald Reagan would ever have moved as policy. (Incidentally, medical science has proven there is no antidote to doting on Reagan in his dotage. Massive injections of fish oil won't do it. Hot Coke enemas have proven ineffective too. Once visited by the Reagan incubus, the victim is rendered incapable of critical thinking.)

We also note in Mr. Patterson's attack on McHenry the use (twice) of the term "professional politicians." Anti-incumbent fever, anyone?

How many years has Virginia Foxx been in elected office? (Answer: 27)

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Wednesday, March 03, 2010

In These Economic Times, What a Helpful Suggestion! 

Congressman Patty McHenry (R), from nearby Tiny Town, has finally noticed the economic collapse happening all around him -- actually, the economic collapse has been happening in his Congressional district for several years now -- and has found the magic bullet: put Ronald Reagan's mug on the $50 bill.

That will involve, of course, booting Ulysses S. Grant off the $50 bill, but we're down with that. Grant was a ruthless and successful military general, an accomplished autobiographer, and a wholly incompetent president.

In other words, an even trade. McHenry wants the Father of Banking Deregulation on the $50, the Father of Trickle-Down, the Dim Tool of the Kleptocrats.

Git 'er done, so Little Patty will have something to brag about to the home folks, especially those who worship at the altar of St. Ronny without wondering why their economic prospects have so contracted since 1981 and why Wall Street is running everything.

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Tuesday, March 02, 2010

The Democratic Candidates in the NC-10 

We've had some coverage here (a tad) about Congressman Patty McHenry in the NC-10 and about his two (D'OH! now three) primary challengers, but perhaps we should do a little catching up with the two Democrats in the May 4 primary, vying to take on McHenry come November.

One is Anne N. Fischer of Morganton. She has an active website up and running, is described as a social worker and community activist, and actually ran against McHenry in 2004 in his first campaign.

Her primary opponent is Jeff Gregory, a former Shelby postmaster, who does not yet appear to have a website. But he's speaking out in this a.m.'s Hickory Daily Record about how the 10th Congressional District has suffered under McHenry, who doesn't believe in government and who therefore gets nothing much for his district. "It's time for the people of the 10th District to be heard and seriously represented," he said. "I think that we need to take a 'Big Dog' approach for our district. I'm not afraid of getting on the front porch of Congress and barking loud for our people."

The Patty McHenry/Virginia Foxx philosophy of "service" = "We don't get anything for anybody because of our ideology," and perhaps these hard economic times might actually begin to spotlight the hard, dried fruits of such a philosophy. Having been laughed at over the Sparta Teapot Museum, Foxx has now retreated into a do-nothing crouch and actually brags on her Twitter account about her constipated economic policy: "NO RELIEF for my district, NO NEVER!"

Kentucky Sen. Bunning is also helping at this moment to throw The Wages of Obstructionism into some stark human context.

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Friday, February 26, 2010

Elections Filing Update 

Filing to run on the ballots of 2010 ended today at noon. Billy Kennedy does not have a Democratic primary, but Virginia Foxx has one on the Republican side.

Someone else filed to run in the Republican primary against Little Patty McHenry in the NC-10 ... David Michael Boldon. Two will be vying on the Democratic side to oppose the eventual winner of the Republican contest (who will be McHenry, we've said all along). We'll be trying to find out about these Democrats: Jeff Gregory and Anne Fischer.

Heath Shuler in the NC-11 has a Democratic primary opponent -- Aixa Wilson. Whole bunch of panic-stricken extras running in the 11th Dist. in the Republican primary.

Previously noted: Larry Kissell has a primary in the NC-8.

What's going on among Republicans in the NC-6? Poor old thousand-year-old Howard Coble has five primary opponents, which, as in the 10th, means he wins.

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Friday, February 12, 2010

Futility = A Republican Primary in the NC-10 

Incumbent Munchkin Patty McHenry in the NC-10 has little cash on hand, widespread pockets of horror at his very being in his own district, and two Republican primary rivals on the May 4th ballot. If he had one of those two challengers, he might be in trouble, since all the disaffection for McHenry could coalesce around one opponent. But two? Fuggetaboutit!

One of those two challengers has self-financed to the tune of $485,000. The other one, a mere $250,000.

But that's a lot of combined scratch to throw down a rathole. And neither challenger has shown any willingness to attack McHenry or even to draw sharp distinctions between themselves and the incumbent. (Oh, one of the two challengers suggests that McHenry is too liberal -- I'm not making this up -- without being specific about that.)

So far, that primary in the NC-10 is a colossal waste of time and a massive waste of money.

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Thursday, February 11, 2010

Taken at the Iredell County Republican gathering at which the Madam said serving in Congress was "excruciating."

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Stimulus Whore 

Takes credit for a $7,505 U.S. Department of Homeland Security grant to the Linville Volunteer Fire Department in Avery County, though of course Little Patty voted against appropriating the money.


Tuesday, February 02, 2010

When $248,000 + $260,000 = Zero 

Congressman Patrick McHenry (NC-10) has less cash on hand than either of his two Republican primary challengers.

Sorry, but it won't matter. Keadle and Patterson will divide the anti-McHenry vote between them, will elbow each other for advantage while failing to draw sharp distinctions between themselves and McHenry, and McHenry will waltz right through another primary.

'Course, nothing would tickle us more than to be proven wrong about this.

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Monday, February 01, 2010

Foxx Won't Lift a Finger to Preserve the Blue Ridge Parkway 

The Blue Ridge Parkway is indisputably a major economic engine for the 5th Congressional District of North Carolina, as well as elsewhere. Almost 20 million visitors come every year and drive its two-lane blacktop and buy fuel, food, lodging, and the geegaws that gladden the tourist heart, generating almost $2.3 billion in revenue annually in North Carolina and Virginia.

Even conservative Republican Senator Dick Burr realizes its economic importance for his state. Burr has signed on as cosponsor with Sen. Kay Hagan of a 75th Parkway anniversary bill which would authorize the preservation (by purchase) of up to 50,000 acres of land along the Parkway route. Heath Shuler (NC-11) is a key sponsor of the House version of this bill.

Conspicuously missing from the House bill's list of co-sponsors are two who actually represent counties through which the Parkway passes ... Patrick McHenry (NC-10) and Virginia Foxx (NC-5).

Foxx's explanation is all rigid conservative ideology. She wouldn't spend a dime, not even to help her own constituents.

The Winston-Salem Journal scolds her in an editorial this a.m.: "...we can't afford to get behind on preserving the parkway. The recession is lifting, and resort property prices will soon resume their steady climb. We should have money for land ready so that orderly development can be balanced with preservation -- our responsibility to future generations."

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Sunday, January 24, 2010

Attacking P. McHenry as a Closet ... Lib-rul? 

The 10th District website, Republicans Against Patrick McHenry, went live in May 2008. The anonymous writer rehashed several McHenry scandals that month (example: he was "photographed grabbing the breasts of known Lesbian activists whilst drunk" -- love the Victorian whiff of lace and lavender contained in that word "whilst"!).

The thrust seems to be that Patrick McHenry is really a liberal in Republican silk panties.

We do not believe there are enough Republican voters in the 10th District dumb enough to believe that to elect either of McHenry's two primary challengers on May 4th. Though, apparently there are enough of them dumb enough to peddle that particular line on a blog.

The way to defeat McHenry is as a do-nothing incumbent: "A lot of talk, a lot of TV camera time. No action. What has Patrick McHenry done for you?"


Friday, January 22, 2010

The Bull's Eye on Patrick McHenry 

A tea-party-allied group calling itself Change the Congress is targeting NC-10 Congressman Patrick McHenry.

Change the Congress was founded and is run by Catherine Welborn, an anti-tax South Carolinian. The Charleston Post & Courier did a lengthy profile on her last August. What's clear is that she's "non-partisan," insofar as she's willing to organize against Republican incumbents if they're deemed impure on the question of taxes and spending.

She has a Facebook fan page, "small-r republicans," which has grown to over 600. Yesterday Welborn posted this attack on Patrick McHenry and endorsed one of McHenry's primary challengers, Salisbury dentist Scott Keadle.

Attacking Patrick McHenry from his right is mildly amusing. But this attack is fueled by the throw-all-the-bums-out adrenalin now pumping in the context of Scott Brown's Massachusetts Senate victory. Which, if I were Patrick McHenry (and trust me: I thank Gawd every day that I'm not), I might spend at least 15 minutes of my week worrying ... especially given my dismal recent fundraising.

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Wednesday, January 20, 2010

Not That There's Anything Wrong With That 

NC-10 Congressman Patrick McHenry, named by Howie Klein of Down With Tyranny (albeit at Huffington Post) as one of five "closet cases" currently serving in the U.S. House of Representatives.

The real reason McHenry keeps drawing multiple primary challengers in the 10th Congressional District.

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Tuesday, January 19, 2010

McHenry's Other Republican Primary Challenger 

Scott Keadle, a dentist and first-term Iredell County Commissioner, is the other major Republican challenger to incumbent Republican Congressman Patty McHenry (at least, so far as we've heard).

Keadle gave an interview to Larry Clark in the Hickory Daily Record (published this a.m.), and he's positioning himself as critical of both major parties:
"Neither [Democrats nor Republicans] did anything about the budget. Neither group did anything to stop subprime lending that wrecked banking and hurt the economy. Neither party has done anything about illegal immigration. And neither one has lived up to the ethical and moral standards of the people. They're a perpetual embarrassment. All I've heard is talk, no matter which party is in control."

The issue is McHenry's incumbency: "I'm tired of hearing bad ideas from Democrats and excuses from Republicans. We don't need career politicians who care more about themselves than the people they are supposed to serve."

If incumbency is a negative for Patrick McHenry, it's also a negative for Virginia Foxx. A partisan hack who loves the limelight thrown off by the likes of Michele Bachmann ain't no bargain for the unemployed and uninsured people of the 5th District. What Keadle says about McHenry applies just as much to our own Bobblehead.

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Monday, January 18, 2010

Republican Trouble in Patrick McHenry's House 

Vance Patterson of Morganton, who announced back last October that he would challenge incumbent 10th Dist. Republican Patty McHenry in the 2010 primary, has now opened an office in Morganton and hired staff.

The saving grace for the perennially embattled McHenry is that there's yet a third Republican who says he's running in the primary, a Salisbury dentist named Scott Keadle. In other words, all the anti-McHenry Republican votes get divided between two challengers, and McHenry sails through the primary.

Patterson's candidacy may be more entertaining than the dentist's, since he defines himself as a "serial entrepreneur" and has hired the reigning Miss Greater Wilmington as his fundraiser.

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Monday, January 11, 2010

Foxx: Friend-of-the-Court But No Friend of Gays 

Virginia Foxx is one of 30-some Republican members of Congress who are sticking their noses into governmental decisions in the District of Columbia. Foxx, little Patty McHenry, and Walter Jones from N.C., along with 36 others, have signed a friend-of-the-court brief demanding a voter referendum on gay marriage.

The Foxx loves her some WEDGE issues, don't she now?

The D.C. City Council recently voted overwhelmingly to allow same-sex marriage. A local church leader, Bishop Harry Jackson, pastor of Hope Christian Church, sued in D.C. Superior Court to force a referendum, which most people figger would fail, especially once the fundies and other right-wing fringe groups saturated the atmosphere with smears, fears, and queers.

Madam Foxx, who once upon a time was a good deal more accommodating to gay Americans, having supported decades ago the right of gay couples to adopt children, ought to be ashamed of herself now, but isn't, nor is she embarrassed to be pursuing this kind of politics.

Beware the person who can't be embarrassed.

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Monday, November 09, 2009

Black Bart 

To get the Democratic votes for the narrow victory on Saturday for the House's "Affordable Health Care for America Act," Speaker Nancy Pelosi was forced into a corner by the Blue Dogs, led by Rep. Bart Stupak of Michigan. She allowed a vote on the Stupak amendment to the bill which not only outlaws abortion coverage in any public option insurance plan (a redundancy, since the so-called Hyde Amendment already did that) but also outlaws abortion coverage in any private insurance plan if it participates in the eventual federal "insurance exchange."

In other words, the Stupak Amendment effectively bans abortion coverage in all insurance plans, both private and public, an interference in women's health care that is not just a step backward but a naked slap at what has been a legal right of American women since 1973. Some 64 House Democrats voted for this crap. And all the Republicans (save one). They had a major assist from the League of Catholic Bishops.

Bart Stupak is not just your garden-variety Blue Dog. He's also a "C-Streeter," a resident of the Capitol Hill row house where some holier-than-thou male members of Congress pray loudly to God, often about the proclivity of some of their residents to fornicate freely with lesser mortals. The C Street residence has been the safe retreat for several superior "Christian" men, including Mark Sanford of "hiking the Appalachian Trail" fame and John Ensign, who screwed a staff member and then paid her off.

Residents in the C Street house are members of a shadowy and secretive fundamentalist Christian group calling itself The Fellowship. Founded in 1935, it has held clear theocratic designs on government. And also on women, who are obviously supposed to be their obedient vessels.

After Bart Stupak successful cornered Nancy Pelosi into throwing American women under the proverbial bus Saturday night, he dutifully cast his yea vote for final passage of the thus severely restrictive "Affordable Health Care for America Act" and then was observed from the gallery of the House chamber to do the following:
Stupak, during the vote on the final bill, didn't stick around long. He cast his vote quickly and shook the hand of Majority Leader Steny Hoyer (D-Md.), then headed over to the GOP side, where he was warmly welcomed.

Rep. Patrick McHenry (R-N.C.), a strident partisan, was the first to greet him, shaking his hand and slapping him on the back. Stupak then found [Republican Minority Whip Eric] Cantor and [Alaskan Rep. Don] Young, shook their hands, and retired from the floor to the Republican cloakroom.

Birds of a feather.

Meanwhile, another key group of the progressive coalition, pro-choice women, is hung out to dry. And Democrats wonder why they may start losing more than just Virginia and New Jersey.

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Wednesday, November 04, 2009

The Republican Brand 

Rep. Patrick McHenry (R-Poisontoadsville) is waaay too important for his britches.

On Sunday he left his SUV Ford Explorer (compensating much, Patrick?) illegally parked at the Charlotte-Douglas International Airport. "The front tires were on the curb. The back tires were in the driving area of the parking lot, one resting atop a yellow speed bump." The photographs that the Gaston Gazette reporter took are precious!

McHenry's spokesman said the Congressman was running late, had somehow temporarily misplaced his personal servants, and was greatly needed on urgent national business of shoving cream pie in Barack Obama's mug.

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Monday, October 19, 2009

Entertainment News 

Little Patty McHenry of the NC-10 draws two Republican challengers in next year's primary. Which means he walks right in again.

One strong challenger might add up to something, but two? Fuggedaboutit.

Interesting tidbit in this coverage: McHenry's having trouble raising money. Guess that Cuban cigar concession didn't work out.


Thursday, September 10, 2009

Angry White Boys Club 

That's yeller-out Rep. Joe Wilson (R-S.C.) in the middle of the picture, leaning forward. Rep. Patrick McHenry (NC-10), busily tweeting, is sitting three slots to Wilson's right.

As for Rep. Wilson's open contempt for the president, fellow South Carolinian and House Majority Whip James Clyburn said, "Joe is very confrontational. He held his first town hall meeting three blocks from my house at my kid's high school. Now why would he have this town hall meeting in my congressional district, three blocks from my house in my kid's high school? It's not in his district. That's the kind of guy Joe Wilson is. He loves confronting people. So he was confronting the president, just as he was confronting me."

"Joe Wilson took our state's reputation to a new low. I thought Mark Sanford had taken it as low as it could go, but this is beyond the pale," Clyburn said.

The Democratic Congressional Campaign Committee said that in the eight hours after Wilson's outburst, his Democratic opponent, former-Marine Rob Miller, has received nearly 3,000 individual grassroots contributions raising approximately $100,000.

Wilson wasn't the only one openly displaying contempt. A group of Republican back-benchers kept waving sheafs of paper at the President during standing ovations (the 95 Theses perhaps), and other prominent Republicans were seen on camera tweeting away or scanning their Blackberries. It was like 6th period Study Hall, probably including the spitballs and audible farts.

These are the alleged adults who fervently hope their antics will convince the American people to put them back in charge of government.

Dana Milbank reports that Patrick McHenry got up and left the House chamber before the speech was over, apparently late for a meeting of the Tiny Weasel Caucus.

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Thursday, August 13, 2009

McHenry Shakes & Then Covers His Butt 

In Linconton last night, 10th Dist. Congressman Patty McHenry fanned the "birther" flames in a manner that was calculated to keep the myth of the president's Kenyan birth alive:
During a three-hour question-and-answer session, primarily on health-care reform, Lincolnton resident Alan Hoyle asked if McHenry thinks Obama is a citizen. McHenry declined to affirm Obama's citizenship, instead saying: "I haven't seen evidence one way or the other."

Then this morning Little Patty issues a "clarification":
"As I stated last night, I have not carefully reviewed the evidence as a jurist would. However, from what I have read, I have absolutely no reason to question President Obama's citizenship. I anticipate that as a legal matter the courts will continue to come to the same conclusion."

"As a jurist would"? What the hell kind of weenie equivocation is that?

But not to worry. What his constituents heard from his lips last night, an encouragement to a racist exclusion of our elected president, is what will stand, since those given to these fantasies are much less likely to read anything to the contrary (like "clarifications" in the newspaper). The racists were coddled.

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Tuesday, August 11, 2009

Patrick McHenry Saves the World 

N.C. 10th Dist. Congressman Patrick McHenry held a town-hall meeting last night in Mooresville where he was thronged by adoring thousands who begged him to save them from The Scary Black Man in the White House. The end.


Friday, May 08, 2009

Patty McHenry Wanders Off the Reservation 

Rut-roh. Rep. Patrick McHenry (R-Munchkinville) is quoted as saying the Republican Party needs to drop its endless whining about taxes. The Reagan Era is over, he says, having just awoken evidently and having just smelled the coffee.

"Marginal tax rates are the lowest they've been in generations, and all we can talk about is tax cuts," he said. "The people's desires have changed, but we're still stuck in our old issue set."

Next thing we know, he'll be declaring gay people full citizens of the United States.

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Tuesday, March 24, 2009

Under-Performing Republicans: Foxx & McHenry 

According to the Swing State Project (via PPP), in the last election only 23 Republican members of the House did worse than John McCain within their own districts. Two of those 23 were Virginia Foxx (NC-5) and Patrick McHenry (NC-10). McHenry's performance relative to the party's presidential nominee was the sixth worst of any member of the GOP caucus.

Tom Jensen at PPP has remarked before that these statistics suggest just how strong Roy Carter and Daniel Johnson were as challengers to Foxx and McHenry, even though they lost. Jensen also opines that the NC-5 and NC-10 are "completely unwinnable" for Dems, based on the "current configuration" of those districts.

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Thursday, November 20, 2008

Foxx Voted Against Extending Unemployment Benefits 

The U.S. Senate voted today 89-6 to end the filibuster against the Unemployment Compensation Extension Act, which guarantees its passage. The U.S. House had already voted in the affirmative for the measure in October, 368-28.

And, yes, she did. Madam Foxx was one of the 28 who voted against extending unemployment compensation to the tens of thousands of Americans who are currently losing their jobs at an accelerating pace.

Even Patty McHenry voted for this bill. Even Sue Myrick. In fact, Foxx was the only member of the North Carolina delegation to vote against it. Along with her slobber-buddy, Michelle Bachmann.

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Friday, October 17, 2008

McHenry Loses a Debate -- With a H.S. Student 

Little Patty McHenry (R-Munchkinville) was visiting a high school history class at the Pine Lake Preparatory School in Iredell County when he got taken down by a 16-year-old.

In an Advanced Placement history class, junior Ben Napper wanted to know how McHenry was going to deal with a probable Democratic sweep of the White House and both chambers of congress. McHenry showed his displeasure with the question by jokingly trying to step on the boy's toes.

Then Napper wanted to know how McHenry felt about non-discrimination and equal pay in the workplace.

When McHenry answered he was for equality, the student asked, "Then how do you defend your vote against it?"

According to the Record & Landmark reporter, Napper was likely referring to two bills McHenry voted against in 2007, the Sexual Orientation Employment Nondiscrimination Act and the Equal Pay Bill.

"I'm not against equal pay," McHenry said. "It's about how you achieve equal pay."

Gosh. Don't you achieve equal pay by paying equally? Is there some other way? But the rest of Napper's trouncing of McHenry didn't make it into the article. Though the reporter ventured this conclusion: "...if [McHenry] makes another trip to the new charter school campus again, he may want to restrict his tour to the art or music classes."

Because artistic types can't think logically? Or can't recognize a charlatan when they see one?


Tuesday, September 23, 2008

The Consequences of Memory 

"There really was a wolf here! The flock has scattered! I cried out, 'Wolf!' Why didn't you come?"

An old man tried to comfort the boy as they walked back to the village.

"We'll help you look for the lost sheep in the morning," he said, putting his arm around the youth. "Nobody believes a liar ... even when he is telling the truth!"
--"The Boy Who Cried Wolf"

Reading congressional reaction to the Bush administration's attempt to scare our reps. into agreeing to El Presidente's latest attempt at a massive power grab (a.k.a., the Paulson plan to spend $800 billion hauling Wall Street's nuts out of the brazier), we are strongly reminded of the cautionary tale from kindergarten days, the ending of which is copied above as a life lesson. Our Little Boy in the White House has cried "wolf!" several times too many.

Virginia Foxx (who should know a wolf when she sees one) objected strenuously to the $85 billion bailout of AIG last week, but Foxx says now she's not sure how she'll vote on the $700 billion. If she reads her own quote in the press, surely she'll vote against it: "looks like a blank check with no accountability. Taxpayers deserve better." You betcha, Congresswoman. (Must be a blue moon tonight, since I'm agreeing with The Madam.)

Other N.C. members of both House and Senate are expressing something steelier than mere skepticism. Let's hope their resistance spreads like a virus through Congress:
"I'm not willing to vote for $700 billion to save an industry that comes out just as crooked on the other end. I want real reforms." --Rep. Brad Miller (NC-13)

"Lots of people were asking 'Will there be something in this package for people who are trying to pay off their mortgages but having trouble, and not just people on Wall Street?' " --Rep. Mel Watt (NC-12)

"I just don't like the idea of these corporations, who made all these mistakes, all of a sudden saying, 'OK, Mr. Taxpayer, it's time for you to bail us out. [The Bush administration has] tried to panic the American people." --Walter Jones (NC-3)

"I don't think those advocating for the rescue have fully made their case. I have very serious concerns that this proposal could leave taxpayers holding the bag." --Sen. Elizabeth Dole

"Ultimately, my responsibility is to the American taxpayer, who will be the underwriter of this dramatic proposal." --Rep. Patrick McHenry (NC-10)

Okay, we're reading that the Bushies are compromising on some things, but greater over-sight and accountability...? Dunno. Who does?

Thing is, we can recognize an attempted stampede when we see one, a stampede caused by Grade-A known liars.

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Wednesday, August 20, 2008

Patrick McHenry Can't Draw a Crowd 

And this was an advertised town-hall meeting in Hickory.

It's tough trying to fake an interest in alternative fuels along with a first-grader's awareness of environmental dangers while simultaneously adhering to Republican doctrine that the past eight years with two oil men in the White House have yielded us a viable vision of the future, rather than the damned Mulligan stew we're currently boiling in.

One attendee had the effrontery to suggest lowering the national speed limit, at which McHenry jumped back like he'd been offered a devil-on-a-stick.

You can try, but you won't get that boy off the Republican hymnal of "drill drill drill."

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Sunday, August 17, 2008

McHenry, Stumping 

Bite-sized Congressman Patrick McHenry met with a wildly bored group of pre-teens and some of their parents yesterday in a Hickory park and told them about what was happening in Washington, D.C., omitting presumably the night-life, the bar scene, the fund-raising, and the vote-counting, but at least the congressman is holding advertised and open events for his constituents, which is a far cry ahead of his fellow Republican Madam Foxx, who has become one of the most inaccessible, unresponsive, and unaccountable members of Congress.

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Tuesday, July 22, 2008

Another Subprime Loan 

Four-foot-one-inch Congressman Patrick McHenry has loaned himself $175,000 to keep his campaign for reelection in the NC-10 on life-support.

"McHenry spokesman Brock McCleary said the loan shows the Cherryville Republican is 'willing to make a personal investment in his fight for good jobs and lower gas prices for North Carolina.' "

Say what?

That's a slippery slope the Lit'lest Angel has bravely stepped out on (just ask Hillary Clinton). But whatta ya gonna do? Fundraising goes dry, your opponent (Daniel Johnson) is coming on strong, scandal stalks you like a pregnant thought, key members of your own party in your own district hate your guts...

It's not the number of zeros on the check. It's how you spend the money, Congressman.

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Thursday, July 03, 2008

Shifts Big or Small, Depending 

The Cook Political Report has downgraded a couple of dozen "solid Republican" House districts to "likely Republican" and advises its subscribers, "While it's not likely that a majority of the races moved from 'Solid' to 'Likely' Republican will become competitive by November, the poor national climate for the GOP and the DCCC's unprecedented financial edge makes even very difficult districts for Democrats worth keeping tabs on."

Patrick McHenry is on the list in North Carolina, showing movement toward his challenger Daniel Johnson.

The complete list:
AL-03 Mike Rogers Solid Republican to Likely Republican
CA-46 Dana Rohrabacher Solid Republican to Likely Republican
FL-08 Ric Keller Likely Republican to Lean Republican
FL-09 Gus Bilirakis Solid Republican to Likely Republican
FL-18 Ileana Ros-Lehtinen Solid Republican to Likely Republican
FL-21 Lincoln Diaz-Balart Likely Republican to Lean Republican
ID-01 Bill Sali Solid Republican to Likely Republican
IN-03 Mark Souder Solid Republican to Likely Republican
IA-04 Tom Latham Solid Republican to Likely Republican
KY-02 OPEN (Lewis) Solid Republican to Likely Republican
MN-02 John Kline Solid Republican to Likely Republican
NE-02 Lee Terry Solid Republican to Likely Republican
NV-02 Dean Heller Solid Republican to Likely Republican
NJ-05 Scott Garrett Solid Republican to Likely Republican
NY-13 OPEN (Fossella) Toss Up to Lean Democratic
NY-25 OPEN (Walsh) Toss Up to Lean Democratic
NC-10 Patrick McHenry Solid Republican to Likely Republican
OH-07 OPEN (Hobson) Solid Republican to Likely Republican
PA-03 Phil English Likely Republican to Lean Republican
PA-05 OPEN (Peterson) Solid Republican to Likely Republican
PA-11 Paul Kanjorksi Likely Democratic to Lean Democratic
PA-15 Charlie Dent Solid Republican to Likely Republican
TX-07 John Culberson Solid Republican to Likely Republican
TX-10 Michael McCaul Solid Republican to Likely Republican
VA-05 Virgil Goode Solid Republican to Likely Republican
VA-10 Frank Wolf Solid Republican to Likely Republican
WV-02 Shelley Moore Capito Likely Republican to Lean Republican
WY-AL OPEN (Cubin) Solid Republican to Likely Republican

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Wednesday, June 11, 2008

When Crying "Liberal!" Just Isn't Enough 

Lee Teague, Mecklenburg County's GOP chairman, has volunteered some interesting political wisdom for 2008:

Teague says, "This shouting Liberal! Liberal! Liberal! stuff is not going to work this year." Teague calls it a mistake for Republicans to "nationalize" this year's election by linking local candidates to Washington "liberal" politicians. "You nationalize an election when your party is popular in national polls, not when it's unpopular," Teague said. Bush's approval is under 30 percent in many polls. "We've got to win the voters back again."

What prompted such honest talk from the chair of the Mecklenburg County Republican Party? Patrick McHenry, 10th Dist. Congressman, that's who. McHenry had just issued a press release calling Daniel Johnson, his Democratic opponent this fall, a hand-picked Pelosi Democrat, yadda yadda yadda. Which peeved Teague no end. So he sent an e-mail to a reporter.

The resulting story that the journalist wrote also includes pretty interesting quotes from other Republican big-wigs, all pretty much agreeing with Teague.

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Tuesday, June 03, 2008

The Trouble With Washington 

In an interview with the Hickory Daily Record, NC-10 Congressman Patrick McHenry said the trouble with Washington is NOT the lying by administration spokesmen, nor the manipulation of "facts" via a complacent and cowed news media, but the writing of books ADMITTING that lying and manipulation went on.

The Scott McClellan book "is an example of what is wrong in Washington."


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Tuesday, May 20, 2008


Madam Virginia Foxx is in a locked room in Washington today with other members of the Republican U.S. Congress, trying to come up with a new slogan for their party. It's got to be catchy, something that will snatch GOP chestnuts out of the fire before they explode ... since, after all, a mere slogan will convince voters to ignore the reality of the last seven years.

Apparently, "Change You Deserve" just ain't ringing any chimes.

The Republican Study Committee, of which Madam Foxx is a member, offers some of the sharpest minds of the 19th Century, so our money's on them. If bright lights like Patrick McHenry, Sue Myrick, Tom Tancredo, Duncan Hunter, and Michele Bachman (most famous for going mano-a-mano with Foxx over smooching rights to George W. Bush's face) can't come up with something nifty-keen, then there's no such thing as Dr. Seuss or Disney Land and Mother Goose, no nursery rhymes.

"The Republican Party -- Not Just for the Rich Any More"

"Scaring America into a New Century"

"Honk If You Love Preemptive War!"

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Friday, May 16, 2008

On a Roll 

Democratic candidate Daniel Johnson (left, with Fletcher McCrady), running against little Patty McHenry in the NC-10, gets more star treatment today in the Charlotte Observer in a piece written by Jim Morrill.

Pundits and informed observers are now speaking about the Johnson/McHenry contest as "a realigning election." It's already historic in that Johnson has raised more money in a safe Republican district than any other Democrat in living memory.

So McHenry is gonna have a run for his (big) money. That $800 thou he's got in the bank may not be enough. Ten times that may not be enough.

Hear that, Virginia?

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Tuesday, May 13, 2008

Swings, Misses 

1. Poor Pat McCrory. The Republican candidate for NC Gov. criticized Democratic candidate Beverly Perdue for an opinion she doesn't have. In fact, Perdue agrees with McCrory on state policies regarding illegal immigrants admitted to community colleges.

2. Poor Gov. Easley. He's submitted his budget to the short session of the legislature, and because it calls for increased "sin taxes" on beer and cigarettes, the N&O judges it dead-on-arrival.

3. Poor little Patty McHenry. The 10th Dist. congressman attacks Democratic candidate and decorated war hero Daniel Johnson as a Nancy Pelosi recruit and a (gack!) liberal. Dear Patrick, you're going to have to do better than that, like, starting with something that's factually accurate.

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Thursday, May 08, 2008

Patrick McHenry's Next Big Challenge 

Daniel Johnson, the victorious 10th District Democratic congressional candidate, gets star treatment in today's Hickory Daily Record, and for good reason. Decorated military hero, a rising professional, and a proven fund-raiser. "Johnson is viewed as having the background, character and charisma to attract voters," writes Andrew Mackie.

What more could you ask for, other than a congressional district with a little more partisan balance, but Johnson has an admirable history of playing the hand he's dealt, and playing it well.

Meanwhile, the incumbent congressman is looking a little like unrefrigerated meat.

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Wednesday, May 07, 2008

Winners, Losers, and Big Losers 

Say it once and don't say it again: it was a very big night for the Barack Obama campaign, a disastrous night for Hillary. And can we put aside the supposed black/white gulf, when lily-white Watauga County went for Obama by a greater percentage than the rest of the state? This despite the stumping of Bubba through our neck of the woods. Buncombe County, which hosted visits by all three Clintons, went for Obama by over 54%. So much for the "Clinton magic" in western North Carolina (and in rural America generally).

Other Big Winners
Walter Dalton, who won outright in a four-way race for the Democratic nomination for Lt. Gov. Just about everyone was predicting a run-off.

Pat McCrory, who won outright in the Republican primary for NC Gov. Beverly Perdue has now a far tougher row to hoe.

The 40+ NC mayors, including Boone's own Loretta Clawson, who endorsed Barack Obama.

Republican Appeals Court Judge John Tyson, who was knocked out in this primary by two Democratic candidates, who will now have to face each other in November: Kristin Ruth and the grandson of Sen. Sam Ervin.

Poor Fred Smith, whom we were rooting for, who proved (once again?) that free barbecue can't compete with expensive political consultants.

Congressman Patrick McHenry, who though he beat back the challenge from fellow Republican Lance Sigmon, appears to be damaged goods and must now face a gen-you-wine military hero in Democrat Daniel Johnson come November. Sigmon said prior to yesterday that he would never endorse McHenry.

Jerry Butler. What's the deal with Jerry Butler? Why did his home county of Watauga not vote for him in his win in the Republican primary for the NC-45 state senate race? Inquiring minds want to know what the home-town Republican voters were thinking.

Big Losers
Linda Daves and the North Carolina GOP. Their big negative ad against Obama -- the "eeek, a scary black man" TV spot -- did not work in a state where it might predictably have had some effect. Not only have the state Republicans looked craven and desperate to a national audience; they've also effectively slammed the door on reaching out to under-30 voters, who (1) can't countenance the theatrical incompetence of the Bush administration and (2) have apparently grown more mature than their tiresomely racist elders in the South.

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Tuesday, May 06, 2008

Cass Ballenger ... Befuddled? 

Former Republican Congressman Cass Ballenger of the NC-10 has evidently now endorsed BOTH incumbent Congressman Patrick McHenry AND his primary challenger Lance Sigmon ... at least that's the most sense we can make out of this Hickory Daily Record article.

Reporter Andrew Mackie dangles this further bait on his blog about the charges and counter-charges flying about who or what Ballenger has endorsed: "The past three days rate among the strangest in my journalism career. I'm afraid ethical restraints and a multitude of off-the-record discussions keep me from elaborating."

"Cass-gate." Oh my.

But, really, don't tell us you have dirt to dish and then don't dish it.

The strangest paragraph in the Daily Record story: "In his taped message, Ballenger mentions he voted for McHenry, but changed his allegiance after new information came to light. No one in either camp would go on the record about what information Ballenger was referring to in the message."

Most insiders with knowledge of the big wheels that turn the NCGOP expect McHenry to win this primary ... which, after all, might be the best outcome for that young ex-military man Daniel Johnson who'll likely be the Democrat running for the NC-10 seat come November.

With Cass Ballenger getting such a public case of the political dry heaves over McHenry on Primary Day spells big trouble for the congressman.

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Monday, May 05, 2008

Cass Ballenger Endorses McHenry's Challenger 

The tide among Republican Party bigwigs in the NC-10 seems to be turning decisively against little Patty McHenry. The former Republican congressman from that district, the man whom McHenry replaced, Cass Ballenger, has endorsed McHenry's challenger, Lance Sigmon.

Tomorrow may be a looong day for McHenry.

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