#ncsen: Final Debate post-game

threeI liked the format of Thursday’s debate much better than the previous two. It allowed for more of a give-and-take between the candidates. It was also interesting to experience Sean Haugh beyond his YouTube videos. We didn’t learn too much more from last night’s discussion, but there were some interesting moments.  Here we go:

LIGHTNING IS GOING TO STRIKE.  I did an honest-to-goodness spit-take when I heard Thom Tillis blast Kay Hagan for ‘crony capitalism.’ Really?  When the Republican has THIS, THIS, THIS, THIS, THIS, and THIS (among others) on his record? 

My second major OMG moment came when Tillis claimed to be a fighter against the political establishment throughout his political career.  He cited — as an example — his primary challenge against then-two term Republican legislator John Rhodes. Yep. THE John Rhodes who had been named Americans For Prosperity’s legislator of the year?  THE John Rhodes who regularly taunted Democrat speaker Jim Black with handcuffs? (Black ended up going to jail, by the way.)   THE John Rhodes who was REALLY the only one out there calling attention to monkey business being perpetrated by Jim Black and his RINO sidekick Richard Morgan?  Thom actually was a vehicle for the establishment’s revenge against Rhodes. They wanted Rhodes taken out.  Thom was basically a bullet loaded into their gun.  

Tillis also threw in some anecdotes about being elected to leadership roles in the House.  Let me let you in on a little secret — at the risk of sounding too much like Jeff Foxworthy.    If you get elected to something and get handed a gavel and a nice comfy seat on a podium, you might be a BIG TIME member of the establishment.

 If you run for office and Karl Rove bankrolls you, and Mitt Romney and Jeb Bush and Chris Christie and Lindsey Graham campaign for you, you ARE the establishment. 

My third spit-take moment occurred when Tillis blasted Hagan for running off to DC to become part of “the Republican establishment.”  Yep. I had to rewind the DVR to make sure I heard that correctly. 

That gaffe gave Sean Haugh one of the best lines of the night: “It’s OK to get the Republicans and Democrats mixed up.  I do it all the time.”

A PLEASANT SURPRISE. I’ve seen a lot of Libertarian Party candidates in my time.  Usually,  ”kooky” is a kind adjective to use for them. Haugh started off heading down that road, but he settled down as the debate went on.  In fact, I  honestly believe he did a better job of discussing and defending the free market than Tillis did.

During discussion of the minimum wage (why we are discussing this RIGHT NOW, I don’t know), Hagan called for jacking it up and Tillis described it as a decision for state government.  (That position left him wide open for questions from Hagan about why he — as a legislator and speaker of the House —  hasn’t done anything about it.) 

Haugh explained that wage levels are best left to the market — determined by what people will actually WORK FOR.  He talked about his “night time job” delivering pizzas and a discussion he had on this topic with a  21 year old co-worker who likely had no more than a high school diploma.  The co-worker recognized that raising the minimum wage would cause prices of everything to go up — ,making it even harder for lower-middle class and poor people to make ends meet.

On at least two occasions, viewers were treated to Tillis admitting that he agreed with Haugh.

A RESURGENT SOCK PUPPET. It really is astounding that this woman is sitting where she is in the polls right now.  She is running as an unrepentant, unapologetic liberal. (Yet, so many Republicans are scared to run as passionate, principled conservatives. Go figure.)  Outside of David Price’s district, Orange County, and the two black congressional districts, these types of candidates usually don’t fare so well. 

Yet, when you have a GOP campaign that is allowing the lefties to establish the narrative and POUND it home to the voters without a rebuttal, stuff like this happens.  We were told that Tillis was the money man and could raise plenty of cash to blow Hagan away. Yet, Madame Sock Puppet is the one sitting on the mountain of cash.  sock puppet

The Republican campaign has bet the farm on this whole narrative about missing Senate hearings.  It’s clearly not working when Democrats can counter with videotape of Tillis running around DC fundraisers while the House he is supposed to be leading was in session. 

Poll after poll after poll shows that the voters are most concerned about the anemic economy and our porous southern border.  Yet, this campaign is all about local school board issues and committee attendance.

Use the current attack on North Carolina’s marriage amendment to hammer home the point about activist judges  and the importance of having a senator who will not vote to confirm them.  I’d be meeting with the Pattie Curran family — and others like them — to offer sympathy for their troubles and use them as case studies of the damage that Hagan’s beloved ObamaCare has done.  ISIS and committee attendance are two things voters can’t relate to right now.  They’re trying to cope with the skyrocketing cost of living, layoffs, business downturns and failures, and ever-tightening and shrinking finances.  They are concerned about their country being overrun and turned into the diseased,crime-infested, economically-ravaged,  poverty-ridden mess that IS Latin America.

Talk to the voters about this kind of stuff. Explain to them that Kay Hagan and Barry Obama started us down this road, and that by voting GOP in November, we can all do a U-turn and head back in the other direction toward better times. 

 

13 comments for “#ncsen: Final Debate post-game

  1. Raphael
    October 10, 2014 at 2:39 pm

    I think Tillis hired Laurel and Hardy as his campaign consultants or perhaps the Three Stooges. It is the most thoroughly inept statewide GOP campaign I have ever seen. It actually makes Fetzer’s debacle for Dole in 2008 look competent by comparison. We have a weak candidate running an awful campaign.

    It would seem that someone is Tillis’ campaign should be able to read polls and realize he needed to make sure disaffected conservatives did not vote for Haugh. He had the ideal issue to do that on as Haugh is even more of an open borders guy than Hagan. Tillis was probably afraid to go there due to his own record on immigration.

    Oh, for a competent presentable GOP nominee!

  2. jr cooper
    October 10, 2014 at 3:38 pm

    I think we are seeing a shift in North Carolina politics as the state moves more to the left.

    From the Wall Street Journal:

    “But if Ms. Hagan manages to hold on and carry the state for the Democrats, 2014 may be remembered as the year North Carolina became the next Virginia – the neighboring state to the north that has undergone big demographic changes that shifted its politics from red to purple to blue.

    The two states share a lot of commonalities that suggest a similar shift is on in North Carolina. In fact, demographically they look like close siblings. Both have large African American populations and similarly-sized growing Hispanic populations. Both are growing faster than the national average.”

    It is sad to see our state moving to the left but I guess the Northerners moving into NC are having their say.

    • J Bink
      October 10, 2014 at 4:16 pm

      The problem isn’t demographics. It’s the NCGOP and many county and state Republican groups being controlled by Progressive Republicans. They put candidates on the ballot who Conservatives simply can’t support.

    • JJ
      October 11, 2014 at 3:03 am

      Having lived in both states (although my time in Virginia was only as a student at Liberty U for three years early last decade), I can tell you that they and you are wrong on this.

      Virginia’s biggest problem is D.C. and the growing suburbs of that government union/Dem controlled cesspool in the north-east part of that state. The rest is pretty much like N.C. in a lot of ways (and that is mostly conservative/right leaning).

    • Raphael
      October 11, 2014 at 6:50 am

      Well, no. The issue is a totally inept campaign. The voters do not see the distinctions on the key issues that would help a Republican because Tillis has run an issueless campaign for the most part and incompetently let Hagan set the agenda by doing that. Of course, it is all that much easier for her to do that since our media tends more to be liberal propagandists than objective reporters, but the Tillis campaign is so absolutely incompetent, the media did not even have to spin as much as they usually do.

      This is very much like the Broyhill campaign of 1986, where his incompetent consultants ran a ”feel good” campaign instead of an issue campaign and got the same result as Tillis is almost certain to get. Tillis’ debacle will have no more permanent significance than Broyhill’s disaster. One also has to remember that the national GOP was pushing the issueless campaign in 1986 and we lost the Senate as a result. The NRSC and Rove are pushing the issueless campaign this time, and it may well snatch defeat out of the jaws of victory nationally.

  3. Art Bradshaw
    October 10, 2014 at 4:01 pm

    Go to any GOP meeting in NC and you will see retirees from up north that have moved here or from Florida.They are more liberal than home grown tarheels.Each passing year swells with more of them and NC GOP will have to move more to the left or it will become a minority very soon.Add the Latino’s and black’s with the idiot’s graduating from our college’s and you have your future majority voters.The same happened in California and is now happening in Texas.Texas will be a blue state very soon and as liberal as California.North Carolina is not far behind.

    • JJ
      October 11, 2014 at 3:08 am

      No you’re wrong- 1st as you said many northerners (though not all, there are a good chunk of lefties) are conservatives and that’s seen in places like Brunswick Co which has gone Republican precisely because of some conservative NE/+NY(PA) migration.

      2ndly Texas is actually becoming more conservative, and the Hispanic/latino population there leans MORE Republican than the national latino average.

      NC does need to reform it’s University system or you are right about that part of the demographic though..

      Also I personally believe that IF conservatives are willing to engage with the African American (and Hispanic) populations in NC then we CAN an WILL win many to our side because when we engage with them we win (many are churchgoers, and also like conservative ideas when presented like school choice, pro life, supporting small business/entrepreneurship through low taxes and less stringent regulations)!..

  4. Dave
    October 10, 2014 at 7:04 pm

    Hey Raphael,

    What three stooges? What in the world are you talking about on that one?

    • Raphael
      October 11, 2014 at 6:55 am

      The Three Stooges (Larry, Moe, and Curly) were a famous comedy team from decades ago, whose antics are familiar to many from years of reruns. Their stock in trade was screwing up whatever they were doing and then trying to fix it, with the fix usually not working. Tillis’ campaign team remind me a lot of them.

      • J.P. Jones
        October 11, 2014 at 1:31 pm

        Don’t forget the original Stooges: Shemp, Moe, and Larry.

  5. Browny Douglas
    October 11, 2014 at 2:08 am

    Dave, I have to ask you this. How old are you? Please do not take this wrong but it is true. “Ignorance is bliss”. LOL

  6. Pelican
    October 11, 2014 at 11:54 am

    World events may help Tillis as many North Carolinians will be voting against Obama. Maybe the wizard will be exposed and Tillis is elected by default. With all the publicity about same-sex marriage that may stir up the base and bring them out to vote. I think Thom is trending upward.

    • Raphael
      October 11, 2014 at 4:00 pm

      If he gets lucky enough that there is a big enough national wave to carry him in, then it is in spite of, not because of, the incompetent campaign he has run. A good candidate running a competent campaign would be well ahead of Hagan by now. Hagan’s failure to break 50% indicates a vulnerable incumbent. It is just that we do not have a compelling candidate with a compelling message to take advantage of that.

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