EXCLUSIVE: The McCrae Dowless interview.


The man at the center of the political theatrics surrounding the Ninth Congressional District race had a few things to tell us.  Some of it — we’ve heard already.  Some of it was news to us.

On February 22, we submitted via email five questions about the saga to Leslie McCrae Dowless.  Mr. Dowless promised to review the questions with his attorney, and then get back to us with some answers.  Well, we got some answers on February 25.  Here’s some of what we learned:

  1.  Dan McCready and the Democrats did EXACTLY THE SAME THING in Bladen County that Dowless was hired to do.  Yet he and Mark Harris are the only people getting crucified for it.  
  2. Dowless had multiple conversations with NCGOP chairman Robin Hayes and executive director Dallas Woodhouse during the campaign and afterward. 
  3. North Carolina Administrative Office of the Courts (AOC) director Marion Warren is responsible for introducing Mark Harris to Dowless.
  4. Dowless was hired directly by Mark Harris for the campaign.  

When you compare the substance of what we learned with what we were spoon-fed  by the drive by media and the state board of elections, it dawns on you just how poorly served we are by both institutions.

What follows is an exact transcript of our “discussion” with McCrae Dowless.

TDH:  Have you ever spoken with Dallas Woodhouse or Robin Hayes or anyone else employed by the North Carolina Republican Party? If so, can you tell us about the nature of those conversations? 
LMD: Yes – I have spoken with both Robin Hayes and Dallas Woodhouse.  Mr.  Hayes called to offer congratulations and thank me for my hard work on the Mark Harris campaign the day after the election.  Mr. Woodhouse and have spoke a couple of times though the campaign at different events, and also at the Board of Elections recently.  My communications with him have always been very general and he has also thanked me for my work with the Republican party.  I also want to say a special thank you to Dallas Woodhouse for his comments about me at the Board of Elections Hearing last week so that he made it very clear he would no condemn me without a fair hearing.  He is a fair man.  
TDH: Who introduced you to Mark Harris and his campaign for Congress?  About when did that happen?
LMD: Marion Warren, was the first person to tell Mark Harris about me, and is what led to our ultimately meeting each other.  This would have been sometime in the early spring of 2018.  Marion Warren is a former District Court Judge from Brunswick County who then went on to become the current head of the North Carolina Administrative Office of the Courts.  He has announced he is retiring the end of this month to go with Former Chief Justice Mark Martin to work at a Law School in Virginia as Justice Martin’s assistant.  
TDH:  Who actually HIRED you to work for Mark Harris? 
LMD: As Dr. Harris testified last week at the Board of Elections hearing, he is actually the person who hired me to work on his campaign. 
TDH: Are you aware of anyone providing services for Dan McCready even slightly similar to what you provided Mr. Harris’s campaign?  If so, can you name them? 
LMD:  It is my belief that the Bladen Improvement Pact provided services for Dan McCready but for some reason unbeknown to me, the people in that pact seemed to operate individually during 2018 instead of as a pact.  A guy named Jeff Smith also organized a ballot recruiting campaign for the Democratic Sheriff candidate and Dan McCready.  
(End transcript.)
It’s funny that the name “Jeff Smith” would come up like this.  We found a number of drive by media interviews where someone named “Jeff Smith” was repeatedly used as an anti-Dowless talking head / source.  (See HERE and HERE and HERE as examples.)
(A search this morning found that all campaign finance documents for 2018 Bladen County sheriff Democrat nominee Hakeem Brown had been pulled off of the state board of elections website. ) 

4 thoughts on “EXCLUSIVE: The McCrae Dowless interview.

  1. Amazing how the Haymaker is getting exclusive interviews that the mainstream media would love to have. Maybe that’s because #1 – the Haymakers political agenda is laid out for all the world to see. No masking it as “I just want to put the information out there” . People are smart enough to see through it anyway. #2 – The Haymaker goes after hypocrisy harder than it goes after the liberals. Voters need to know what each “team” stands for . When Republicans kill the brand name by acting like big government liberals, somebody has to call them out on it. If not, folks heading to the polls have no reason to believe that the R beside the name stands for anything.
    #3 – The Haymaker works hard and digs. When you read these posts, the amount of background research is amazing. Look above at the info about Bladen County’s Democrat Sheriff nominee’s campaign reports. The Robeson County angle that the media has refused to pick up. Because the Haymaker is a website and not a traditional news format, some of the old guard dismiss it. If they read it they would realize this is old fashioned investigative journalism that just isn’t done anymore.
    Thank you Daily Haymaker. I suggest that folks share the links like I do with all their friends and make sure these types of stories get the attention they deserve.

  2. Woodhouse and Hayes simply have to go. They badly failed the party in this fiasco. The party is in a bind due to their actions and even more so, their inaction.

  3. Thank you for what you are doing as far as reporting. It is very distressing to read MSM reports when you know they are not researching anything, just regurgitating talking points. Keep up the good work. We appreciate TDH!

  4. It is so annoying to see all the media, national as well as state, drone on and on about “Republican voting fraud” in this race, when there was a lot more of it on the Democrat side and it has been going on for years. They did it for Roy Cooper in 2016, got caught at it, and nothing was done. Republicans are taking a PR beating over this, and it will hurt in the upcoming special election regardless of who the candidate is, and it will continue to hurt the party going forward. That all could have been avoided if our party had been aggressively demanding that the Board of Elections get to the bottom on ALL ballot harvesting in Robeson and Bladen counties, including looking at the 2016 Democrat ballot harvesting. There is just no excuse for the way the party handled this.

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