“Far” right, far left — AND FAR WRONG !

That reanimated fossil Rob Christensen is at it again in The N&O newsroom.  I still don’t understand WHY people think he is such a political Svengali.  He doesn’t have a clue.  Here he is on last Tuesday’s vote:

North Carolina’s primary on Tuesday reflected two powerful national trends that are coursing through the body politic — the continued political polarization in the age of Trump and the rise of the #MeToo movement.

If you were a Republican candidate running in the primary, you couldn’t be too conservative or too pro-Trump. If you were a Democrat, you couldn’t be too liberal or too pro-women. […]

Sooooo — appreciating and respecting women is an exclusively Democrat thing?  (Well, after seeing how the boys in Raleigh treated Michelle Lexo, Bev Boswell, and Charlene High — among others — in the recently completed primary, ol’ Rob might have a point there.)


[…] The biggest upset of the day was the defeat of 9th District U.S. Rep. Robert Pittenger of Charlotte, a rock-ribbed conservative with a long history of pushing for tax cuts, opposing abortions and gay marriage, and opposing Obamacare.[…]

I guess Rob missed Pittenger’s pretty persistent F rating from Conservative Review, his votes for big spending Omnibus bills that ballooned the debt and funded Planned Parenthood,  and THIS video.

Well, he missed Rielle.  So, I guess this is all par for the course.


[…]But Pittenger, who was serving his third term, was seen by some as too close to the House leadership. He was endorsed by House Speaker Paul Ryan, House Majority Leader Kevin McCarthy, and John Bolton, Trump’s national security adviser. Vice President Mike Pence shared a stage with him in Charlotte.[…]

I’m sure the FBI and IRS probes of his private business dealings caused some concern.  Dan Forest was the only one in the picture greeting Pence at the airport that day.  And EVERY ELECTED REPUBLICAN who could get past the Secret Service was on stage with Pence.
I could have told you three months ago, just from my contacts in the eastern end of the 9th, that Pittenger was going down.  Those 30-point leads for Pittenger in those polls out of Raleigh were pure nonsense.  Pittenger spent the last six months running up to the primary handing out federal grants in the eastern portion of his district like they were Halloween candy.  What’s conservative about that? 

[…] Mark Harris, a Charlotte pastor who is the former president of the North Carolina Baptist Convention, campaigned to Pittenger’s right, saying he was insufficiently conservative, not supportive enough of Trump, voted with the House leadership to raise the debt ceiling and was part of the Washington “swamp.”Pittenger is the second North Carolina Republican congressman to be defeated in a GOP primary in as many elections. Rep. Renee Ellmers lost to Rep. George Holding in 2016 when both ran in the 2nd District as a result of redistricting.

Ellmers lost, in part, because she was also seen as too close to the House leadership in Washington, and because she took several positions that offended social conservatives.[…]

Actually, Ellmers loss was due to a number of factors.  She was mean.  She was rude to constituents — even going as far as cursing them out.  You rarely saw her around the district. She totally abandoned EVERYTHING she campaigned on.  She committed fraud on the voters.  Holding was not exactly a knight-in-shining armor to conservatives.  But he was easily viewed as much easier to stomach than THE QUEEN OF MEAN.

There is still a lot of ill will against Harris among grassroots conservatives.  They see him as being instrumental in helping the despicable Thom Tillis get the 2014 GOP nomination for US Senate.  There are also plenty of concerns about his past statements on amnesty and illegal immigration.   Again, as with Ellmers v. Holding, this was about picking the most palatable.

Harris has got potential.  I think, in the long run, conservatives will get a whole lot more out of him in Washington than they ever would have from Pittenger.