Monday, October 30, 2006

Robin Hayes Lies Again....and again....and again

We knew it would happen. We just didn't know when. The latest attack ad is out and Robin Hayes has outdone himself. The new story he's telling is that Larry Kissell is guilty of running attack ads. Anyone who has paid attention knows that simply isn't true.

Robin Hayes is the only candidate in NC-08 who is running attack ads. The count for mailers is at four and the television ads are up to four as well, I think.

Working For Change, a blogger at BlueNC and a friend, has this to say today.
Now, anyone who has a television in the 8th district and who actually watches that television during the evening news has seen the ads run by both the Hayes and Kissell campaigns. These 8th district television watchers know without prompting that the only candidate for the 8th district Congressional seat who is running a negative campaign is Robin Hayes.

While Hayes spends what must be millions of dollars to produce a variety of ads like the one depicting Senators Hillary Clinton and Ted Kennedy eating the Capital building and heavily pixilated pictures of Larry flashing across the screen with titles warning voters of impending tax increases from Washington Liberals, Larry is running two ads…one with banjo music and pick-up trucks and images of real, live, everyday folks from the 8th district talking about taking their country back while the other is a rebuttal to the Medicare D attack ad Hayes is running. Even in this rebuttal, Larry sticks to the facts of his position and stays away from smears, name calling and other negative tactics.

Come to think of it, anyone in the 8th district who receives mail knows that Robin Hayes is the only candidate running a negative campaign in the 8th district as the Honorable Congressman has sent out several different mailers distorting Larry’s positions on Iraq, Medicare and Taxes. The only mailer I’ve seen from Larry Kissell is a letter talking about poll numbers and asking for a campaign contribution.

Since we can clearly see that Larry Kissell is not running a negative campaign, where on earth does that Hayes lie come from?

A late fee. That’s right, a late fee. The FEC charged the Kissell campaign with a $210 late fee for a report that was submitted a few hours after a deadline way back before the Primary…and the fee was paid in full by the quarterly report made on July 12.
That's right folks. Robin Hayes has turned a late fee into being fined for running negative attack ads. The problem is, he's run so many negative attack ads himself that about 90% of the viewing public will see Robin Hayes for what he is. Robin Hayes had already established himself as a liar when he promised to vote against Fast track trade legislation a few years ago, but voted for it at the last minute, then he broke the same promise when he voted for CAFTA. Now, it looks like he's just adding fuel to that fire.

If we were to take a page out of Robin Hayes truth twisting book then we could look at Robin Hayes' votes in Congress and completely truthfully make the following statements: Robin Hayes voted to have innocent Americans killed in Iraq, Robin Hayes voted to bankrupt our senior citizens with a faulty prescription drug plan, Robin Hayes voted to force your grandchildren to pay off his debts, Robin Hayes voted to continue the highest unemployment in the state in several of his counties. See how easy it is? Is it fair? Is it accurate? If you are Robin Hayes, fair and accurate don't seem to matter.

For those of you who have not had a chance to see Larry Kissell's ads, I will post them here. They are a wonderful change from all the negativity coming from the Hayes campaign.


The Real Deal

Takin' Our Country Back

I'm Taking My Country Back, The Song

Now isn't that refreshing?! A candidate who promotes himself without denigrating or attacking others.

Sunday, October 29, 2006

Republicans for Larry Kissell

I'd like for all of us to take a moment to think about a phenomenon going on in the 8th District. It's illustrated by this photograph posted to the right. If you look closely, you'll notice that along with the two Kissell signs on the truck is the trademark oval "W" sticker proudly displayed by supporters of President Bush.

Yes, there are Republicans supporting Larry Kissell.

No, they haven't "seen the light". They aren't giving up their conservative ideology. They do not want to stand under the big tent. The "End Times" have not arrived. Hell has not frozen over.

The fact is there are many conservatives who believe that character counts. They see in Larry Kissell the same qualities we see. They like them as much as we do.

Some of them have more in commmon with Larry than we do. They are from the same background. The are cut from the same cloth. They've walked the same paths.

I'm not chiding anyone here to watch what they say. I've spewed as much venom at Bush and the Republicans in Washington as the next person.

We simply need to keep in mind that there are folks on the other side of the aisle who want to send the best man or woman to Washington. They want a representative who undertands what it's like to walk in their shoes. For many Republicans in the 8th District Larry Kissell is the man who can understand their perspective and take their voice to Washington.

If you've read much of what I've written about Larry Kissell, you might remember that I often call Larry an 8th District Democrat. For some voters it won't be the Democrat part of the label that's important.

Next time you feel the need to go off on President Bush or Republicans in general, keep in mind that one of those Republicans may very well cast the winning vote for Larry.

Saturday, October 28, 2006

Stop Hayes

Stop Hayes

I couldn't have said it better myself.

Sunday, October 22, 2006

Robin Hayes, NC-08: Massive Job Losses with No Plan for Change

In the recent debate between Robin Hayes and Larry Kissell held by the League of Women Voters in Charlotte and aired on WTVI, both men claimed that improving the job market for the 8th District workers was a top priority. Larry Kissell said it was the number one priority.

Robin Hayes claimed that he had worked hard to bring jobs to the district. From WWAY we have this:
Hayes said he's worked hard to promote economic development and efforts to bring good jobs to the parts of the district that are struggling.
The great thing about a claim like this is there is proof readily available about just how effective Robin Hayes has been at bringing jobs to the 8th District. Unemployment numbers are readily available through the North Carolina Employment Security Commission. Not only can we find out what the unemployment rate is today, we can look back at 1999 when Robin Hayes took office.

The 8th Congressional District in North Carolina was once the home of a booming textile industry. Free trade agreements have closed the doors on many of the district's textile mills and many workers face tenuous futures. The jobs that are coming in offer lower pay and fewer benefits.

The counties Hayes represents are parts of Cumberland, Mecklenburg and Union and all of Cabarrus, Hoke, Scotland, Richmond, Stanly and Montgomery.

In 1999 when Robin Hayes took office the unemployment figures were very low. While there has been extreme fluctuation in many of the counties as industries come and go, the unemployment rate in almost all counties is higher today than when Hayes first took office. In some, the rate has almost doubled. Because unemployment has normal seasonal fluctuations the comparison is more fair if we compare August 1999, which is a few months after Hayes was elected, to August 2006. In that comparison we see this:


August 1999

August 2006































Eight of ten counties have seen an increase in their unemployment. Six counties now have unemployment rates that are higher than the national average and one that is tied with the national average. All in all, Robin Hayes has done very little to help the overwhelming majority of counties in his district. Most folks are much worse off than they were before he took office.

Most recently, a hosiery mill in Hayes' home county of Cabarrus announced its intention to move its operation to an undisclosed foreign country to take advantage of the lower wages they are able to pay foreign workers. Shogren Industries will be closing its Cabarrus location. The story is from the Charlotte Observer.
Mark Zerona, Shogren's president and chief executive officer, said in a statement that it has become increasingly more challenging to compete in a global environment.

"While it is a sad day for all of us at Shogren Hosiery, it is unfortunately a necessary step for the future of the company as we strive to bring the best products and services to our customers," he stated.

The company could not compete on price and type of product offered while manufacturing in Concord compared to products from overseas, Glanville said. Shogren declined to say the international site where it is producing hosiery.

Robin Hayes lied to his constituents about his intentions to vote against giving President Bush Fast-Track trade authority and he lied to his constituents about his intentions to vote against CAFTA. These were two extremely important issues to North Carolina's 8th Congressional District and the constant closing of textile and other manufacturing businesses and the resulting high unemployment figures are a direct result of Hayes' broken promises.

Fortunately for 8th District voters they have an opportunity to send Larry Kissell to Washington. Larry worked in the textile industry for 27 years and left to become a teacher when the company he worked for made the move to Mexico. Kissell is an 8th District Democrat with 8th District values. He understands that participating in the new global economy is important, but he also understands it isn't more important than protecting 8th District jobs.

In the debate sponsored by Charlotte's League of Women Voters and shown on WTVI, Kissell clearly stated there should be no more free trade agreements until we've brought good jobs back into the 8th District. Larry Kissell understands honesty. When Larry says he will put the needs and concerns of 8th District residents first, you can count on it.

To most of us there is a clear choice for the 8th Congressional District. For those who need a little more help seeing this clear choice, the race is between:

Larry Kissell, a man of his word or Robin Hayes, a man who doesn't keep his word.

Larry Kissell, a man with 8th District values or Robin Hayes, a man with values determined by special interest groups, Dennis Hastert and George W. Bush.

Larry Kissell, a man who wants to bring good jobs to the 8th District and Robin Hayes, a man who has voted to send those jobs to foreign countries.

Vote Larry Kissell on November 7th.

Friday, October 20, 2006

The Flaming Hoop - Because Retirement Shouldn't Be Easy

Medicare Part D. The Prescription Drug Plan for our senior citizens. It sounds wonderful and should have been, but in the hands of Republicans it has turned into a nightmare for many who can ill afford complications in their lives.

In today's Washington Post there's a piece reporting that over half a million low income seniors who were automatically enrolled last year will have to apply this year for the new plan.
Some advocates say the affected seniors may not have understood a letter about the change that the Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services sent last month. And even beneficiaries aware of the change might have trouble completing the six-page application, they said.
A six-page application is a bit much for anyone. I've seen shorter college applications and job applications. So, of the people covered by Medicare Part D, the most vulnerable group has yet another hurdle before actually receiving the benefits they're entitled to during the second year of the plan.

If having to cough up thousands of dollars to satisfy a mid-year copay is termed the doughnut hole, then facing the loss of free coverage at the end of the year if a six-page application isn't completed on time is like making seniors jump through a flaming hoop to get their coverage.

These seniors will not be dumped from the plan, but would revert to a plan that requires a monthly premium. The problem there is that these are truly the most financially and medically vulnerable who are covered by this particular plan, so the likelihood they can afford a monthly premium is very low.
Medicare drug plan beneficiaries qualify for special help if their annual incomes are at or below 150 percent of the poverty level, which is $14,700 for individuals and $19,800 for married couples. Also, individuals must have no more than $11,500 in assets, and married couples no more than $23,000 in assets.
So, what would you do if you found yourself faced with a monthly premium that you couldn't afford but the alternative was going without the prescription drugs you also can't afford?

Republicans in '08: Party of Fear

From the Washington Post: It looks like Republicans will be reaching back into their bag of gags to pull these elections out too. The overall theme is fear. If they don't scare you out of your socks with talk about a Nuclear North Korea or a Nuclear Iran, then they will scare their base out of their wits and to the polls with the spectre of scaaarrrry Nancy Pelosi as house speaker.


Hey! I'm not making this up. They even admit that's their plan. They can't run on their records because other than a tax break for ultra rich people like Congressman Robin Hayes(NC-08) and Congressman Charles Taylor(NC-11) in NC they don't have a record to run on.

Answer me this. Have you seen one ad sponsored by the Hayes campaign that talks about all of his accomplishments? Nope. Not one. All he's done is attack Larry Kissell. When you haven't done anything right all that's left is to scare your base into voting for you.

Wednesday, October 18, 2006

Robin Hayes, NC-08: Desp-er-a-a-tion

It's des-per-a-tion.
It's des-per-a-a-tion.
He's making them sweat.
He's making their tighty whities wet.

What a joke. The latest poll conducted by one of Robin Hayes' contributors and the preferred partisan Republican pollster for today's hip and stylish Washington "in" crowd, says something completely different from any poll conducted in the district so far this election cycle. Mind you, I'm not saying the numbers are wrong, just that they don't match up with anything else we've seen recently. (PDF)

It must be that special way they have of asking questions over at Public Opinion Strategies. For example, this question found in a discarded script: Would you feel favorably or unfavorably about the Democratic candidate if you found out he/she had committed murder/adultery or had unpaid parking tickets or low SAT scores? (I made this question up....but I'm just sayin'.........)

Ahh, yes, the always reliable push poll. They are the perennial favorite of many Republican pollsters. Of course, when Robin Hayes has already lied in every ad piece released on television, radio or through the mail, what's a little lie over the phone? You've got to hand it to them. When they lie, they make sure they use every medium available.

But, maybe I've been hasty in dismissing this poll. Let's take a close look at the methodology, questions and results.

No information released other than it was a "scientific" survey of 400 people with a margin of error of 4.9%

No questions released.

You can find the results by clicking here. It's what a typical release looks like when it's your own internal poll and you need to manipulate the numbers a bit to say what you want. The last thing you do is let reporters see your data.

It doesn't take any amount of skill or talent to pull a poll out of your hind side. Look how quickly and easily I, The Southern Dem, poll people from several different states. My roving pollster Working for Change has polled people in Virginia, the Washington DC area, West Virginia, Maryland and Pennsylvania this very night. We can report that 100% of those polled said they would vote for Larry Kissell if given the chance and 100% polled said that Robin Hayes is a liar. As the roving pollster drove through each state I received an update on our poll. The numbers did not shift. Of course WFC and her mother probably got tired of asking each other the same questions over and over again as they drove from state to state. However..............I get... my point.

If we can't examine methodology and questions to give us a better feel for the validity of the poll, then we have to look at the company itself. This is what I can find from SourceWatch:
In 2001, it was charged with violating Virginia's polling disclosure laws, and it has also been accused of using push polls to influence elections.
One of those accusations occurred as recently as a few days ago up in Maryland. The article can be found at The Baltimore Sun.

I also find in my investigation that all of the four principals of POS who are listed at SourceWatch - Glenn Bolger, William D. McInturff, Neil S. Newhouse and Gene Ulm - have given generously to Republicans and a couple have given to TOMPAC, Together for Our Majority Political Action Committee. This is the leadership pack for embattled RNCC leader Tom Reynolds. Yes, the Tom Reynolds who helped shelter Mark Foley, a gay Republican congressman who groomed 16 year old male pages for future.....ah service to...ah...their country. Yes, the very same Tom Reynolds who has financed Robin Hayes to the tune of at least $30,000 over the last 3 cycles through his TOMPAC and the very same Mark Foley who was responsible for "whipping" up all those votes for CAFTA.

Are you getting a picture of that tangled GOP web they have going there in Washington? First you have a polling company with four principals who are Republicans and between them give generously to Tom Reynolds' PAC. Then you have Tom Reynolds as chair of the RNCC - the committee charged with helping Republicans get elected to congress who benefits from polling that shows his Republicans leading. He also benefits from those push polls - polls that are actually marketing tools used to sway voters, not gather data. Then you see Tom Reynolds giving money to his loyal Republican followers like Robin Hayes. Reynolds gives the max each cycle to keep Hayes in his fold. Hayes turns around and hires the polling firm that gives so generously to Tom Reynolds' PAC. In return, Hayes gets the numbers he wants to see.

It's just one big Republican circle jerk up in Washington.

I can imagine the Hayes camp celebration. It's probably quite a sight over there. I congratulate you on your little poll, even if the numbers are a bit suspect.

I'm sure you'll pardon the rest of us for not joining in your celebration. You see, while you are reaching in to your bottomless bag of filth to win this election there were ten American servicemen and women killed in Iraq yesterday. That's the highest number killed in one day in the past ten months. It's a reason to mourn, not to celebrate. This war that Hayes has pledged his undying support for is not a cause for jubilation.

As you celebrate your poll, another textile mill in Concord, NC has announced that it is closing and 235 of our fellow citizens face uncertain futures. The cause? This new "global trade environment" that was bolstered by Robin Hayes' vote for CAFTA. You know, the trade bill he promised vehemently to vote against. Right, right....he sold out his constituents for trade protections with China.

China, yes, China. The very country that we are relying on to help manage the volatile situation in North Korea. Do you honestly think we are going to be able to play hard and heavy on trade with China when we are relying on them to support trade sanctions against North Korea, their traditional ally? China is a major power broker in this very tenuous situation with North Korea. Do you really think we're going to play it tough with them on fabric imports when they are busy dealing with a nuclear North Korea?

This is a serious world we live in Congressman Hayes. You and your campaign staff can busy yourselves with games and silly attack ads. You can continue banking on your belief that your constituents are too stupid to see through your attacks. The fact is, many of them are not better off than they were in 1998 when you took office. They live every day with the threat of those things we commoners have to deal with - job loss, healthcare bills, a loved one shipping off to Iraq or a late payment on their car. They aren't stupid, Congressman. Many of them see you for what you are - a privileged wealthy man whose sense of entitlement has blinded him to the real concerns of his contituents. They see a man more concerned with protecting his own $55 million than protecting the people who are happy to have $55.00.

Something tells me these people aren't represented in your poll, Congressman Hayes.

Tuesday, October 17, 2006

Vote for Larry Kissell

Larry and his Mom
Vote for Larry Kissell
for Congress
on Nov. 7th
Please click here to see Larry's ad
on Medicare Part D

Tim Whitmire, I Apologize

Dear Tim,

I owe you an apology. I really had no way of knowing whether you're a wannabe millionaire like I mentioned in my criticism of your sloppy article from a couple of weeks ago. It just seemed natural to accuse you of it since your article seemed to be so one-sided and your assertions all seemed to be memes started by the Hayes campaign. I guess when you accepted the Hayes camp's story without checking it out it seemed to me you must be cozy with Carolyn Hern. I apologize. I was a bit crude and used some tacky figures of speech and again, I apologize.

I also called you a hack. Well, few journalists enter the field with the thought of commercial success. I certainly wouldn't want anyone to think I was implying you had received anything from the Hayes camp in exchange for your sloppy reporting on Larry Kissell. No. I don't think they gave you any money to write an article so void of factual support.

While I do sincerely apologize for calling you names, I'm not going to back away from my claim that you practised very sloppy journalism. You got more wrong than you got right. You're a professional and I expect better than that from you. I'm fessing up to all the things I got wrong about you, so let's do a quick rundown of some of the things you got wrong as well so folks just reading this will have some perspective.

While the AP was quick to make a correction of this glaring factual error, I don't know why you would say that the district has the same number of Republicans as Democrats when that information is easily found at the NC Board of Elections. I can't imagine a motive for you to intentionally mislead your readers and you certainly aren't so lazy that you wouldn't check that information out, right? I guess it was just a mistake.

I also can't figure out why you would say that Larry entered this race to teach his high school students about civic responsibility. Larry has never said anything like that. That was a meme being pushed by the Hayes camp not long ago. Surely you are much too professional to just take that information and not check it out, right? That would certainly be a dead giveaway that you were cozy with Carolyn or (((shudder))) Garth. One simple phone call to the Kissell campaign could have straightened that little tidbit out, so surely you aren't so lazy you wouldn't call the Kissell camp, right? I guess it was just another mistake.

Then there's that little bit about Larry Kissell having so little money that the only thing he can afford to do is go door-to-door talking to voters. Now, it's true that Larry is sorely underfunded. It is true that he campaigns in a traditional grass roots style by knocking on doors. It is also true that Larry has ads on radio and television in every market in the district. That's another little fact that could have been established had you bothered to call the Kissell campaign. I can't imagine you would know and intentionally leave that out. I'm sure you're much too professional for that. I guess that's just another mistake.

Finally, because I just can't bear to go look for anymore mistakes, there's this bit about CAFTA the goat. You said that as recently as last spring Larry was campaigning with a goat named CAFTA. Well, Tim, CAFTA was retired to pasture after attending two parades in late November of 2005. Now, I haven't checked my calendar and maybe I'm wrong, but the last time I did check, November was found in late Autumn. Larry received the goat as a gift from mill workers who had lost their jobs to free trade agreements. CAFTA made a couple of appearances and then was put to pasture to happily live out the rest of his life. For some unknown reason, you have him campaigning with Larry six months after he has retired. One more mistake.

Four (or more) mistakes in one article is quite a lot, especially since verifying your information could have been accomplished with one phone call. But, I'm going to take back all the ugly things I said about you. I apologize. It doesn't really matter what your financial aspirations are or whether you are friendly with the Hayes camp. Let's stick with the facts, since that is what I'm fussing about to begin with. That fact is, based on that piece, you aren't very good at collecting factual information on which to base your articles.

Take care, Tim. Best of luck with that journalism career.

Your friend,


Friday, October 13, 2006

NC-08: Larry Kissell Pushes Back with Class

First-time candidate, Larry Kissell, continues to set the standard. This time he's shown how to push back against negative attack ads - especially in a market that is already weary of them and wary of their messages. View Larry's new ad and see what you think. It's just Larry being Larry.

This isn't a long diary and I'm sorry for that. The new numbers from yesterday have provided a new source of energy and I don't know anyone who isn't busting their butts on the ground or on the phones.

Wednesday, October 11, 2006

Robin Hayes Losing 8th District Veteran Support

Robin Hayes, the man who makes campaign appearances in an 82nd Airborne baseball cap, is losing the support of veterans in the 8th Congressional District in North Carolina. For your viewing pleasure:

Recently Hayes held a rally for veterans in Cumberland County and according to a prominent Cumberland County official only 7 people showed up. Ouch. Ouch. Double Ouch.

Labels: , ,

Had Enough of Republican Charles Taylor, NC-11?

Good friend and colleague at BlueNC, Robert P. put this together based on the Wall Street Journal piece in today's paper. I don't have the online version, only the paper version, so no link.

Aren't I lucky to have so many talented good friends and colleagues at BlueNC?

Please Sign this Petition

Anglico is a good friend and colleague at BlueNC. He wrote this piece the other day and I have been remiss in posting it here. I apologize. I have taken the liberty of bringing his entire post to The Southern Dem since I am too slack to be creative this morning. Please read and sign the petition.

Yesterday I wrote about the power of one individual vote in one individual district to change the world for the greater good. Today I'm asking that you join me in signing an open appeal to all North Carolinians currently represented by Republicans in Congress.

To: North Carolinians with Republican Congressmen

On November 7th, you have the opportunity to change the course of history. Using the most powerful tool in the world, your vote, you can restore America's integrity and honor.

North Carolina Republicans in Congress have betrayed American values. They have sold us out to moneyed interests, driving up stock prices and driving down wages. They have pushed through health policies that protect drug companies instead of senior citizens. They have created massive deficits. They have condoned the practice of torture. They aren't taking care of your district because they aren't taking care of America. And if they stay in power any longer, bad will turn to worse. You can already see it coming.

The only way to change the course is for at least one house of Congress to be controlled by Democrats.

Your individual vote on November 7 could be the one that changes the world. So when you go to the polls, please cast your ballot for the Democratic candidate.

We are your neighbors here in North Carolina, and we thank you very much.

Why couldn't we get a million registered Democrats in North Carolina to join in signing this petition?

It will take a lot of word-spreading to make something big happen. So if you're willing to help, please:

1. Link the petition or this entry to your personal blog
2. Email the link to the petition to your personal lists of friends and family
3. Post the link in comments on open threads in other blogs like those listed here.

Thanks for all you do.

Tuesday, October 10, 2006

Need a Place to Check In While BlueNC is Down?

Thought I would leave a little welcome post up just in case friends from BlueNC stopped by while the site is moving to a more secure server. Come on in and grab a hot mug and a warm cookie.

I hear the debate went very well today and that Robin Hayes was not prepared for a candidate as strong as Larry. Larry did not back down on job creation and free trade. I'll tape the debate and maybe get it on Youtube.

This race gets more and more exciting as the days go by, but it's keeping everyone busy and that's a good thing. I'm phoning and would love help for those of you who have cell minutes available. I will send you a phone list if you let me know you want to make calls.

What's going on in your favorite race? What are you doing to get through these final tough 3.5 weeks?

Vernon Robinson, NC-13: No Respect for Fallen Soldiers

A few days ago I wrote a post about Vernon Robinson's newest smear ad. You might have had a chance to see it before he had to pull it from the air. Hotline Blog posted about the ad and debunked every assertion Vernon made or lie he told. If you didn't get a chance to see it, you can visit Youtube.

Pay close attention to the opening shot. Do you recognize the photograph? I didn't either, but the owner of the Pulitzer-Prize winning photograph did and isn't happy about it.

Forget for a minute that this is about stealing someone Else's work. Forget that Vernon Robinson stole the property rights to this image from the owner and used them to smear Brad Miller.

Take a look at the real picture as posted on the Rocky Mountain News along with several others by the same photographer. Read the beautifully written and heart-breaking stories that go with the photographs. After you've dried your eyes - because you will cry - stop and think about what Vernon Robinson actually did in stealing this image.

There was the body of a young marine in that coffin. Standing nearby, there was a young bride, pregnant with her first child waiting for the body of her husband. Behind the photographer, there were family members waiting for the final leg of this young marine's journey to come to an end. While we don't see these people, if you stop and think about this moment, their grief is palpable.

Vernon Robinson, used this fallen soldier for political gain. He used this beautiful image of what was a heartbreaking time for this family to smear another human being.

I'm having a hard time coming up with the words to describe Vernon Robinson's actions. For some reason vile and loathesome just don't cut it. He offers not one redeeming quality. Not one.

He had a chance on FOX News to apologize. He didn't take it. Instead he told a bold-faced lie on national television. On the Hannity and Colmes show he said the ad wasn't broadcast and was only put out on the internet to get feedback. That is a lie. This ad aired 20 - 25 times on News 14 and WMYV and was continuing at the time to run on FOX News broadcasts of the story. Watch the Youtube clip of Vernon's lie.

As I mentioned above, Robinson pulled the ad from the airwaves. However, it wasn't without some prompting. Robinson received a cease and desist order from attorneys for the Rocky Mountain News and it looks like there may be legal action taken against the producer and director of the ad, Kay Daly and Associates out of Charlotte.

I guess when common human decency doesn't prevent you from writing, producing, directing, approving and paying for crap like that, we'll just have to settle for cease and desist orders.

Mea culpa: I also have used a photograph of flag-draped coffins without stopping to think about the men and women who were arriving home in them. While the photograph wasn't used to smear anyone and was actually part of a post about a candlelight vigil in support of the troops, it was still wrong. I have removed the photograph and apologize to the families.

Saturday, October 07, 2006

Letter to Robin Hayes

This is hilarious. One of our bloggers over at BlueNC has written a great letter to Robin Hayes. Go give it a read. It's a good one.

Saturday Morning UnFunnies - Foley Version

OK, OK, I know what you are thinking. There is absolutely nothing funny about a predator loose in the House of Representatives enticing young men into homosexual trysts. There is also absolutely NOTHING funny about Republican leadership in the US House of Representatives learning about this problem, doing nothing about it, lying about their knowledge and lack of response and then blaming it on A. the teenager(s) in question B. the Democrats and/or C. the press.

Those of us who have paid attention to politics for some period of time are used to Republicans shirking their responsibility for their transgressions. It is always someone Else's fault and their base of voters buys into the finger pointing. Soon the lies that are disseminated through the GOP noise machine have oozed down to the average citizen and we find they've swallowed the swill and are obediently repeating the lies. How many of you have heard that it's Pelosi's fault? The teen page's fault? Brian Ross'/ABC's fault? Has it trickled down yet?

Don't worry. It will. Or....

Maybe this time, the average Joe and Jane Republicans are tired of obediently repeating the lies. Maybe this time, they've decided enough is enough. Maybe this time, they have decided they really do want to be able to wear the "family values" badge without feeling like hypocrites. Maybe this time, they've been asked to cover for a transgression that is just too horrible for them to swallow. Maybe this time, they're going to say, "No!"


Let's take stock of all the different excuses, examples of finger pointing and blame placing that are going on out there. It's mind-boggling to say the least.

  • Hunter at DailyKos tells us that Chris Cannon, R-Utah, is not only blaming the pages but their parents as well. It's the parents' responsibility to raise their children to not tease a 52-year-old man into soliciting them for sex.
  • Matt Drudge, in his Republican slime report, gives two anonymous sources who say this was a prank by the page. The page, now 21, is a Republican, is straight and is working on Istook's gubernatorial campaign. Way to screw one of your own, Drudge. You did what Foley never got the chance to do. Lying sack of excrement!
  • Dennis Hastert tells the Chicago Tribune that Clinton's people were to blame and George Soros, too. No, they didn't send the emails. They didn't cover up Foley's penchant for little boys entrusted to the care of the US House of Representatives. Supposedly, according to Hastert, they knew about it too and waited to release it at a politically advantageous time. Of course, he offers no proof. None whatsoever. He doesn't need proof. All he needs is that GOP noise machine. Do you hear it revving its engines? (ht to TPM Muckraker)
  • Newt Gingrich, Hastert and too many Republicans to name have blamed the leak of the email on some nameless Democrat. Wrong. The person who linked the email is a Republican. The Hill has the story.
  • Jack Kingston, R-Ga, does his part in spreading the lie through CNN, that Democrats knew of the inappropriate scandal and timed the release of the email to gain political advantage. Of course, we already know this is false, but the reporters don't challenge the assertion and the grand old prevaricating habit continues for the GOP as they try to repeat a lie often enough that it becomes the truth.
  • Joe Barton, R-Texas joined the fray saying Democrats have no right to criticize Republicans at this time when two of their own were involved in a similar scandal. Let's hop into the way-back machine and travel to the 1983 House Page Scandal. Here we find that two Representatives were involved in sexual behavior with 17-yr-old pages. However, we also find that one is actually a Republican. Follow the link to Wikipedia for a brief description of the scandal. This is the old "they did it too, so they're just as bad" routine. The problem is, they did it too back in 1973 and you did it too back in 1980.
Each day brings a new barrage of deflecting, dodging and disseminating of lies by Republicans as they try every old trick in the book. Tricks that have always worked in the past. Tricks that their base has certainly helped them use. Tricks that have lost their effectiveness as they've become worn-out with overuse.

Who knows when the fresh news about this Republican scandal will end. Maybe it will end if Hastert resigns. Maybe it will end when average Republican voters stand up and say, "Enough!" Maybe it will end when House Republicans run out of lies and excuses. Who knows when it will end.

Regardless of this scandal's stale date, certain things need to end. The most important?

Republicans need to stop trying to make it everyone Else's fault but their own.

It doesn't matter when the press had it. Republicans had it first and did nothing.

It doesn't matter if the teenager responded in any way to Mark Foley's enticements. Mark Foley is a 52-yr-old man who shouldn't have been using the Internet to entice a 16-yr-old into doing anything. It isn't the page's fault. End.of.story.

It doesn't matter if 20 or 30 years ago a Democrat and Republican had sex with two different 17-yr-old pages. That was then and this is now.

Quite frankly, it doesn't matter if Democrats heard rumors that there were problems with Foley and Republican pages.(No proof, just based on Hastert's assertion that Dems knew and didn't report it.) Those were rumors. Hastert, Reynolds, Shimkus - all REPUBLICANS - had first-hand knowledge of the inappropriate behavior and they did NOTHING. NOTHING.

No, there's nothing funny about this scandal at all. There's nothing funny about the inappropriate actions of Mark Foley. There's nothing funny about grown men - all Republicans in this case - who do not take responsibility for their own actions. There's nothing funny about politicians who have no respect for their constituents, so they participate in the noise machine - each playing their part to spread lies, rumors and sound.

There's nothing funny about any of this, but it's what I have for today. I'm a mom. I'm a voter and I'm angry.

Friday, October 06, 2006

Cook Political Report Moves NC-08 Race

Charlie Cook has now moved NC-08 from solid Republican to likely Republican.

Here are the changes:

CA-04 Doolittle Likely Republican to Lean Republican
CA-11 Pombo Likely Republican to Lean Republican
CO-04 Musgrave Likely Republican to Lean Republican
FL-13 Open Lean Republican to Toss Up
KY-02 Lewis Solid Republican to Lean Republican
MN-06 Open Lean Republican to Toss Up
NV-02 Open Likely Republican to Lean Republican
NY-26 Reynolds Solid Republican to Toss Up
NC-08 Hayes Solid Republican to Likely Republican
PA-04 Hart Solid Republican to Likely Republican
PA-07 Weldon Lean Republican to Toss Up
PA-10 Sherwood Lean Republican to Toss Up
WA-08 Reichert Lean Republican to Toss Up
WI-08 Open Lean Republican to Toss Up
That says it all right there. I'm beside myself!

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Taking our Country Back with Larry Kissell

I love this ad. It put a big smile on my face. It will make a stark contrast to all the nasty negativity of Robin Hayes. Larry is running like the front-runner. Robin Hayes is running scared.

Robin Hayes Attack Ad Full of Lies and Doughnut Holes

Robin Hayes climbs in bed with Vernon Robinson to learn a thing or two about getting down and dirty. You'll know what I mean if you've seen Robin Hayes' new attack ad claiming that Larry Kissell is against Medicare Part D.

Hayes has been taking responsibility for Medicare Part D up to this point. He brags about his part in passing legislation that forces our government to pay top dollar for prescription medicines instead of being able to bargain for the best price. He's proud of his plan that forces many seniors to choose between their life-saving medications and food.

The photoshopped ad distorts Larry's features and attempts to ridicule his use of the word boondoggle to describe the mess that is Medicare Part D. Robin Hayes lies to senior citizens saying that Larry thinks Medicare is a waste.

We all know that's not true. AARP knows that's not true. At AARP they have Larry's stance on Social Security, Healthcare Reform, Medicare, Long-Term Care and Retirement Security and funny thing is Larry's position on these issues matches EXACTLY the positions of AARP. If you visit the link above, you will see just how little respect Robin Hayes has for our seniors. Not only does he flat-out, completely, horizontally lie to them in this attack ad but he hasn't even taken the time to answer AARP's questionnaire so that our voting senior citizens will know where he stands.

I guess he's just too scared to have his real positions out there for the public to see. He'd rather lie and distort the views of the man who is willing to stand up and represent the people of this district - all of them.

All in all, Hayes comes out of this smelling pretty stinky. A Vernon Robinson-style attack ad about a serious subject like Medicare just doesn't make sense. Any attack ad against an humble, honest man who puts others first doesn't make sense. But, a silly, bitter ad full of lies during the current climate where Republicans are facing questions about very serious problems within the Republican just doesn't make sense. Neither do a lot of other things the Republicans have done. Like Medicare Part D, for instance.

Please take this time to contact the Robin Hayes for Congress Campaign office to let them know you aren't fooled by their deceit. Ask them why they are attacking Larry Kissell and giving a dishonest view of his stance on Medicare? Ask them why they are lying to senior citizens. Let them know that we've had enough dishonesty in government and it's time to come clean. Let them know that you checked with AARP and you know Robin Hayes is lying.

Their number in Concord is 704-795-2000.

Thursday, October 05, 2006

Vernon Robinson's Lies

No, I'm not planning a book and it would certainly take several hundred pages to outline all of Vernon Robinson's lies told over this election cycle. I will speak to two specific pieces - the conflagration and his most recent ad attacking Brad Miller.

Just a quick follow-up to Vernon's fundraising letter that turned out to be one big fat whiny plea for more money. It was based on an exaggeration and several lies. First, the conflagration was a massive exaggeration. Yes, there was a fire. The wonderful Jay Ovittore not only has pictures from Vernon's email, but he was fabulous enough to snag the super duper handy dandy official report from the fire department.

The cab of the truck pretty badly damaged. The cargo area, though appears to be only slightly damaged. Most of that looks like it is simply soot from the fire that was in the front of the cab. In other words, he's flat out lying to the people he's trying to filch money off of. No way he has to replace that many signs. If something as delicate as bumper stickers survived the conflagration you know the signs did.

The fire report. Absolutely no mention of foul play. None. No suspicions passed on to police. Nothing. In other words, by insinuating that the Miller campaign or Democrats were responsible for the accident (sliced fuel line), Vernon Robinson has proven he has no decency, no character, no moral or Christian values. He's a liar and a cheat. He plays on the sympathies of the people on fixed incomes who receive his emails and fundraising letters and he lies to them and wants only their money in return. He then proudly delivers these mailing lists to Republicans in Washington as a sign of his generosity and fundraising prowess.

Class act there, Vern.

Now, on to Vernon's latest ad. I'm not going to show it or link to it. Robert P. posted it last week. It's so bad that Robinson was criticized on Fox News. That's saying something when Fox News turns against a Republican. It was so bad, that bothered itself to refute just about everything in the ad.
We find the ad misleading on several counts. Miller did nothing that would have denied body armor for troops. There was no connection between the National Institutes of Health studies in question and funding for body armor. And despite the misleading way the ad belittles them, the sex studies had such stated goals as slowing the spread of AIDS, understanding homosexuality and improving the lives of senior citizens as their sexual function declines.
Please go read the entire review of the ad. The ad was disgusting. I have not heard one person claiming Vernon Robinson is funny anymore. It's nice to see this respected group with a national following stand up for Brad Miller. He deserves it.

He and his wife and other wonderful members of his family do not deserve the crap that Vernon Robinson has been slinging about. Nobody does.
Call to Action

This is a beautiful call to action. This gentleman did a very nice testimonial for Heath Shuler that I've tried to post on the site, but it isn't showing up. Hopefull this one will post.
Shuler Testimonial

This is just wonderful. It's well worth the time you spend watching it. Heath Shuler wouldn't vote the way I would like him to on Choice, but if we put enough Dems in Washington, we won't have to worry about that vote. Heath's a good man and he's been upfront about his beliefs and has not dodged any difficult question.

Tuesday, October 03, 2006

Robin Hayes' Twisted Friends and Their Tainted Money

Several months ago I was knee-deep in the muck investigating Robin Hayes' felons and friends - or felonious friends - and his close financial links to several admitted liars, adulterers and (now) convicted felons. Little did I know that the information compiled would link Robin Hayes to an alleged pedophile. I am flat-out, completely, horizontally disgusted.

While the story continues to unfold on a national level, we have our own little story here in North Carolina's 8th Congressional District. Robin Hayes has strong ties to Mark Foley, Dennis Hastert, John Boehner and Tom Reynolds. All of these men apparently either approved of Foley's baiting of young teenage boys for homosexual acts, or they actively chose to ignore it. Now, they are shifting the blame to either the teenage boy(s) or the press or anyone but themselves and Mark Foley.

It is outrageous that Robin Hayes and his fellow Republicans would find it more important to cling to their majority in congress than to protect teens from illegal sexual activity with a grown man. The predatory actions of Mark Foley have only been denounced by one North Carolina Republican, Walter Jones. Apparently, Robin Hayes, Sue Myrick, Charles Taylor and Patrick McHenry all think Mark Foley's penchant for pedophilia is A-OK as long as they get to keep their jobs and his campaign contributions.

The North Carolina Democratic party was immediate in their response to the pedophilia apologists. Jerry Meek and Schorr Johnson quickly had a press release on the NCDP web site and released to the media.

The Wall Street Journal (sorry no link) carried this in today's paper, page A-4.
With Democrats now the ones on the offensive, yesterday they called on Republicans to return funds from Mr. Foley, who had been a prodigious party fund-raiser. In North Carolina, the Democratic Party released a statement asking of the incumbent Republican, "Who does Robin Hayes stand up for? Mark Foley and the Republican House leadership or underage children?"
It was also picked up in out of Connecticut where we get this:
In Indiana, Baron Hill, a Democratic candidate for a House seat, asked the incumbent, Rep. Mike Sodrel, a first-term Republican, to reject any financial contributions from the national party. In North Carolina, where Rep. Robin Hayes, a Republican, is engaged in a tough campaign fight, the state Democratic Party issued a statement asking, "Who does Robin Hayes stand up for — Mark Foley and the Republican House leadership or underage children?"
This same NCDP quote can now be found in The New York Times and a very interesting discussion can be found at Craig Crawford's place.

Just how connected is Robin Hayes to Mark Foley, Dennis Hastert, Tom Reynolds and John Boehner? Financially, he's very connected to them. Let's examine those connections:
Florida Republican Leadership PAC - Mark Foley (R-Fla)
2002 - $1,500
Friends of Mark Foley for Congress
2002 - $1,000

Freedom Project - John A. Boehner, (R-Ohio)
2002 - $10,234
2004 - $9,765
2006 - $5,000

Keep Our Majority PAC - Dennis Hastert, (R-Ill)
2002 - $10,000
2004 - $10,000
2006 - $10,000
Hastert for Congress Cmte
2002 - $2,000
2004 - $2,000

Together for Our Majority - Thomas M. Reynolds, (R-NY)
2002 - $10,000
2004 - $10,000
2006 - $5,000
So, Robin Hayes has received a total of $2,500.00 from the alleged pedophile, Foley over the past 3 election cycles and $83, 999.00 from the leadership team that worked to cover up Foley's disgraceful and possibly illegal sexually flirtatious conversations with teen boys.

Are you disgusted yet?

If you add that to the total contributions taken from other Republicans in congress who have publicly admitted committing adultery, lying or who are now under indictment, in prison or have pleaded guilty and will be going to prison, you will be disgusted.

If you still are able to hold down your disgust, let's look a little more closely:

American Prosperity PAC - Randy "Duke" Cunningham (R-California)
2002 - $5,000
Currently serving prison term

Americans for a Republican Majority - Tom DeLay (R-Texas)
2002 - $10,000
2004 - $10,000
2006 - $10,000
Indicted for money laundering

Congressional Majority Cmte - Bill Thomas, (R-Cal)
2002 - $6,000
2004 - $10,000
Bill Thomas Congressional Cmte
2004 - $1,000
Admitted adulterer - had affair with Phrma lobbyist

Conservative Victory Fund - Steve Symms, (R-Idaho)
2002 - $2,901
2004 - $824
2006 - $883
Confirmed adulterer (by his wife in court documents)

Doing Our Nation's Service PAC - Donald L. Sherwood, (R-Pa)
2004 - $1,000
2006 - $1,000
Admitted adulterer

Friends of Bob Livingston PAC - Bob Livingston (R-LA) - Retired
2002 - $500
Admitted adulterer

Future Leaders PAC - Jerry Lewis (R-Calif)
2002 - $5,000
2004 - $5,000
2006 - $5,000
Lewis for Congress
2002 - $2,000
2004 - $1,000
Under investigation for defense lobbyist problems

Hoosier PAC - Dan Burton (R - Ind)
2006 - $1,000
Admitted adulterer

Peace Through Strength PAC - Duncan Hunter (R - Calif)
2006 - $5,000
Duncan Hunter for Congress
2002 - $1,300
2004 - $2,000
2006 - $1,000
Under investigation in connection with Duke Cunningham bribery case

Superior California Fed Leadership Fund - John T. Doolittle (R-Ca)
2006 - $5,000
Doolittle for Congress (or Friends for John T. Doolittle)
2004 - $1,000
Under investigation in the Jack Abramoff corruption case(s)

That's another $93, 408 dollars in money tainted by the activities of the donors - all Republicans. This is the party of family values. This is the party that chooses to discriminate against same sex couples while they are sleeping around on their own wives. This is the party that would choose to hide illegal activity to save one seat in Congress rather than protect children. This is the party that works so hard to keep Robin Hayes in office.

This is what I said about Robin Hayes' donor list last March:
There were enough felons, indictees, adulterers, liars and cheaters to fill a good-sized corner of hell.
I hope hell has room for expansion, because the list of corrupt Republicans who finance Robin Hayes just got longer.

Monday, October 02, 2006

Larry Kissell, NC-08: Boots Still on the Ground

Lest you think I do nothing but pick on poor newspaper reporters, I've decided to take another approach today. I'm going to show a couple some love. The first, Joanie Morris of the Salisbury Post really earned it. The second, Tim Funk, of The Charlotte Observer is going to get some love for a much better job in portraying Larry's campaign.

After the hatchet job last week of GOP shill, Tim Whitmire, seeing some good strong reporting is refreshing. On a side note, I find myself chuckling over the fact that Whitmire's piece was picked up by only a handful of papers or news sites and only one was in-market. Voters in Fort Wayne, Indiana will probably be wondering who the hell Larry Kissell is and why they can't vote for him as will voters in Myrtle Beach and Hampton Roads, VA. Only WCNC (Channel 6 News) had the piece printed on their web site. The paper of record in North Carolina still has not picked up on the story. The Art Pope Digest in Raleigh carried it, though - big, BIG surprise.

More on the flip...

Joanie Morris. Nominate this woman for a prize. This was in Sunday's Salisbury Post. It is a beautiful piece. She really took time to get to know Larry and at least seems to understand why knocking on doors is important. She doesn't label is as an act of desperation.
With rolled up shirt sleeves and a "Live Strong" armband, he is simple in what he wants.

"I'm a working person," he tells a voter at one home. "We're trying to reach working people."

By going door-to-door, "it gives people an opportunity to understand that we are coming to them," Kissell said. He introduces himself, tells a little about his background and then asks them if they have any questions or concerns that they will take with them to the polls on Nov. 7.

"I show them where I am from by saying that I don't believe that Washington gets it," Kissell said. "They don't understand the concerns of the working people in this district."
I won't give it all away. Please go read the entire piece. She really did a beautiful job of capturing the spirit of Larry's campaign and what Larry wants for the people of his district. After you've read it, please send Joanie some love at

The second piece out in Sunday's paper was in Tim Funk's column. Yes, one of my favorite gimmick guys has redeemed himself somewhat. His piece yesterday included Larry in the top piece of his "Inside Your Washington".
National Democrats and Republicans -- i.e., the ones who live and scheme in Washington -- are finally taking an interest in Democrat Larry Kissell's bid to unseat four-term GOP Rep. Robin Hayes in North Carolina's 8th Congressional District.
Actually, Funk does a pretty good job of giving both sides - criticism from Hayes and counter from Kissell. From Hayes:
hey'd fired a few shots at Kissell in the last few months, but no heavy artillery. Now, though, they're taking a closer look at the race and seem frustrated that the first-time candidate has no political record for them to go after.

So the National Republican Congressional Committee's latest shot: Kissell "won't take a position" on key issues.

Hayes, who is seeking a fifth term, echoed that charge, telling the Observer last week that "nobody has to wonder where I stand."
Kissell counters with:
Kissell's answer: His Web site ( details his positions on everything from the Medicare prescription drug plan ("a confusing boondoggle," he says) to the war in Iraq (he favors "phasing out" U.S. troops over the next year and shifting focus to protection of America's ports and borders).
Tim doesn't call Hayes and the national Republicans liars in so many words, but anyone who has followed this race knows that Larry has had his positions front and center on his web site and he doesn't hesitate to talk about them when he's hitting the pavement, attending events or being interviewed by reporters. Robin Hayes won't get away with repeating a lie over and over in hopes that it will become the truth. Funk stopped that perennial GOP trick cold.

Once again, I won't give it all to you. It is actually worth a visit to the Charlotte Observer to read Funk's column.....and that's high praise coming from me. While you're at it, he deserves some praise for a well-balanced piece. His email is I mean, gee, he even got it right that there are more Dems in the district than Reps.

Update: I gave the wrong publish date for Tim Funk's piece. It is in today's Charlotte Observer, not yesterday's.