Fishiness: Did Robin Hayes’s side deal screw over McCrory, commercial fishing AND The NCGOP Downeast?

Many of the folks I’m hearing from say ‘Yes.’220px-Robin_Hayes,_official_109th_Congress_photo

Governor Pat McCrory was one of the few blemishes on what was otherwise a great election for North Carolina Republicans.  Some suggest the fallout from HB2 hurt the governor.  Others are suggesting anger over a controversial toll deal in the Charlotte area contributed significantly to his close loss to Democrat Roy Cooper.  Others are pointing to a long-simmering feud along the North Carolina coast.

For those who don’t know, there has been a significant fight going on over the last few years between our state’s commercial fishermen and the Coast Conservation Association (CCA).  The CCA stands accused of working to kill off commercial fishing along our coast.  635539950868005532-something-fishy-2

The state marine fisheries commission — appointed by the governor — is charged with overseeing rules, regulations, and laws governing fishing in the state’s waters.   Commercial fishing is a significant economic activity along the state’s coast. Wealthy recreational fishermen allied with the CCA have been flooding the governor’s campaign with cash and making some political gains at commercial fishing’s expense.

Well, there was an appointment quietly made to the fisheries commission just before the November election.  Here are some details from the commercial fishing side:

As noted in a Wednesday special update, the Governor has released the names of his latest appointments to the Marine Fisheries Commission. They are:
Mark Gorges was reappointed, but moved from a recreational seat to at-large;
Chuck Laughridge was reappointed, but moved from an at-large position to recreational;
Alison Willis was reappointed in a commercial seat;
Brad Koury was appointed to an at-large seat.

I was asked by media for comments on those appointments, and here is what I released:
Comments from Jerry Schill on the recent appointments to the Marine Fisheries Commission by Governor McCrory:

nt viewpoint, such as a restaurant owner or seafood consumer, the Governor assures the continuing decimation of commercial fishing communities along our coast.The appointments announced by Governor McCrory on November 2nd are astounding. Commissioners known to have violated the Open Meetings Laws of this state were reappointed. The two at-large seats were filled by recreational fishermen, meaning that the MFC will now be three from the commercial perspective, five recreational and one scientist. Rather than fill the at-large seats with individuals from a differe
Coincidentally, a Petition for Rulemaking was filed on November 2nd before the Marine Fisheries Commission by the Southern Environmental Law Center, acting on behalf of the North Carolina Wildlife Federation, that would severely restrict shrimping in North Carolina. Or was it a coincidence? Will fishermen get a fair hearing on the issue now before a stacked Commission?[…]

stock-vector-quirky-drawing-of-a-rotten-fish-49263286According to the official magazine of the NC Wildlife Federation, former congressman and current NCGOP chairman Robin Hayes is a “senior advisor” to the North Carolina Wildlife Federation.

Interesting.  The fisheries commission is quietly remade just before the election in a manner that suits the CCA and NCWF.  On the very same day the commission is remade, the NCWF — with their senior advisor Robin Hayes — files a petition before the fisheries commission.  Hayes, as you know, likely had a little influence with the governor — who, as you know, makes appointments to the fisheries commission. (But, I digress …)

And here is Dare County GOP chairman Browny Douglas tossing in his two cents: 

Myself and quite a few others could write volumes on this subject. I’ll try not to, however. It can all be brought to light by connecting the dots. Dot 1 is the forever disgusting Coastal CONservation Association (CCA) The 2nd dot is the Division of Marine Fisheries (DMF). The 3 dot is the Marine Fisheries hayes-keyframeCommission (MFC). Dot 4 is the N C Wildlife Federation (NCWF). Dot 5 is, the NC GOP Ch Robin Hayes. Dot 6 is the NC Governor.

Think CONTROL of what rightfully belongs to ” we the people” by those that want CONTROL for themselves.
The above 6 dots once connected will lead you the point of CONTROL. Now since the CCA for over 20 yrs in NC has failed to completely achieve their goal, it has married up with the NCWF who has brought to the table none other than the Southern Environmental Law Center (SELC).

The normal recommendation process to fill the MFC was cast aside 5 days before election day. I have more than ample reason to BELIEVE that reappointed member Chuck Laughridge’s name WAS NOT on the list of recommendations presented to the Governor. But, guess what? Wonder if Robin Hayes would care to expound on how that happened?

shenanThose of you in the Outer Banks area may remember the SELC’s role in prolonging the renovations to the rapidly deteriorating Bonner Bridge AND N.C. 12.  SELC lawyers were throwing all kinds of monkey wrenches in the process, putting lives at risk in the area, negatively impacting the local economy, and costing taxpayers a ton.

So, did the NCGOP chairman — who gained that office via dubious means — put his own self-interests ahead of the welfare of the people of eastern North Carolina and the election-year fortunes of the state GOP?

38 thoughts on “Fishiness: Did Robin Hayes’s side deal screw over McCrory, commercial fishing AND The NCGOP Downeast?

  1. he is getting old you cannot really blame him for anything at this point

    he broke my trust when he lied to the room about not coming to a meeting to become chairman when he said after the election that he wrote the speech or part of it the night before. This proving he new full and well why he showed up to the meeting that day

    the evil I see from the progressive leftists is one thing but the change I have seen over the years in the party that should be honest and above board in all of its dealing is quite disturbing

  2. A great majority of the people spoken with tell me that HB2 was the only reason they voted FOR Pat McCrory. Many others withheld their vote for McCrory because of the fight he picked with SCV. McCrory hurt himself badly in the west on the toll roads issue.

    In eastern Carolina Governor McCrory really screwed up royally with his pre-election anti-commercial fishing appointments to the MFC. Seeing our coup installed Republican Chairman Robin Hayes in the middle of this is no surprise. Hayes is well versed in corruption. I guess the back room dealing is even more important than winning elections to these dudes.

    My wife is still angry with me for not voting for McCrory because Roy Cooper is SO bad. She’s right about Cooper, but we’ve got some pretty bad dudes too.

    It will be interesting to see if the grassroots can make any inroads with the present day rogue Republican Party in North Carolina. As it is now the party has absolutely no credibility with anyone other than the pay to play and globalist crowds. Count me out of that. If Hayes and Brad’s brother are the face of the GOP in our state, count me out of that too.

    1. Maybe you can console your wife with the fact that Ol’ Roy will just be pointed over to the corner that contains the pacifier for him to suck on. That and the hope that Lt. Dan could be the next in line for the
      Gov if we are fortunate…and if he continues to have the same backbone as the past four years. .

  3. Fishy indeed! Pat/Robin/CCA=Roy Cooper in the Governor’s Mansion.
    The fishermen have been ignored, run over, and down right disrespected.
    I thought the the Governor understood the dire situation of our Commerical Fishermen. He has been on the OBX and has actually dinned with the fishermen. Pat, spit that fresh tasty seafood out. It’s not for you.

  4. The Southern Environmental Law Center is one of the more strident organizations in our hard core environmental movement. It is good to see them kicking butt. The NC Wildlife Federation sounds rather benign, but our guys love to take over such groups and use them to advance the hard core environmentalist agenda. And the CCA, what can we say? They have always been a major tool of the hard core environmental movement.

    The commercial fishermen? Like the electric ratepayers, they are just the collateral damage as we implement President Obama’s green agenda. Why should coastal people be able to make a living catching fish or electric consumers have reasonable electric rates, when that interferes with the grand scheme of President Obama and our hard core environmental movement?

    Our green agenda has moved forward by getting progressive Republicans to do our work for us. Robin Hayes is just the latest. Some, we have to pay big bucks to, like progressive Republican consultants Paul Shumaker and Dee Stewart. Others just have no philosophical compass and fall right into our laps. Shumaker and Stewart have provided the access for us to reach more and more progressive Republicans in your state. Heck, a close associate of Stewart is even on staff at your NCGOP headquarters.

    So Hayes conned McCrory into destroying his political career. Now that puts our hard core environmental movement in even a better position. The big moneybags of our hard core environmental movement, Tom Steyer, maxed out to Roy Cooper. So did another of our rich friends, George Soros. Cooper is completely in our pocket. We will no longer have to work with useful idiots like Robin Hayes. We can get direct access to Cooper.

  5. Cooper no doubt owes his slim election victory to SCV members, GOP voters in North Mecklenburg, and commercial fishermen. And political scientists think the Trump-Clinton race was bizarre!

    1. Then there are number of Harnett supporters in my county who left the Governor race unmarked on their ballots. I’ve always thought that McCrory was indifferent to the concerns of the rank-and-file of his own party, but his lack of political astuteness is unbelievable.

    2. It is amazing what a few small groups can do in a race like this. Ticking off a group here and there can really hurt you in the long run I guess.

  6. I can claim “old age” for declining grass roots work, but the truth is that deals like Robin Hayes trying to pressure the NC delegation, then recapturing his position by devious means, the coastal election interference by Tillis and company, and the general loss of confidence that the Republicans in Raleigh will do the right and proper thing took the wind out of my sails. When I find some Godly and honest people who want to do the lawful and moral thing, I will jump back in to support and help them get elected.

  7. McCrory, Hayes and their lap dog Woodhouse lost their credibilities many months ago.
    This the real reason Pat will be moving back to Charlotte in January.
    Maybe honest and real Republicans in the NCGOP will see the light and dump out Hayes and Woodhouse sooner then later. This Republican hopes so.

    1. Are you kidding my real honest republicans have already tried Truth is not enough real honest republicans still fighting on the party level

    FISHERMEN THEY MONEY FROM THE CCA WAS MORE IMPORTANT. Why destroy the Commercial Fisheries Industries of NC coastal Counties?

  9. I’ll say it again there are four reasons whyMcCrory is in the position he is in. Number 1) Cooper is a lot better at politics than Dalton. 2) I do believe McCrory left many thousands of votes on the table over the toll road business 3) HB2 did affect him negatively in the urban counties also to the tune of thousands. 4) HB2 was used by Cooper to significantly out raise McCrory, 5) I’ll add the fishing issue you bring up here if you can show me the loss of votes or percentages in the east.

    1. Check Senator Bill Cooks numbers in just Dare County compared to Pats. It could have been such worse had he taken Hayes advise a week sooner. Some people like me had already voted for McCrony during early voting. I regret my vote for him.

    2. HB2 cut both ways, and at worst was a wash. In the rural counties and among GOP activists it was a big plus for McCrory, even if it cost him some votes in the cities. The analysis in a previous article of Tillis’ old House district in north Mecklenburg showed that even in the suburbs of the big cities HB2 did not hurt Republicans who were identified with HB2.

      My state senator’s own campaign polls showed that 70% of the voters in our rural district support HB2 and that district only leans Republican in voting history. A Republican challenger seeking a Democrat held House seat in the east ignored the consultants who said to always frame HB2 as a bathroom privacy issue and ran adds accusing her Democrat opponent of ”supporting special rights for transgenders”. Going for the jugular on this issue helped her win her that previously Democrat seat.

      In rural areas, HB2 was a big plus for Republicans. In the suburbs, it was a wash. Only in the cities was it a bit of a drag. Maybe city voters are more gullible in listening to our lying media. Overall, HB2 is a plus not a minus for McCrory.

  10. I’ll say it again there are four reasons whyMcCrory is in the position he is in. Number 1) Cooper is a lot better at politics than Dalton. 2) I do believe McCrory left many thousands of votes on the table over the toll road business 3) HB2 did affect him negatively in the urban counties also to the tune of thousands. 4) HB2 was used by Cooper to significantly out raise McCrory, 5) I’ll add the fishing issue you bring up here if you can show me the loss of votes or percentages in the east.

  11. Hey, don’t blame your Central Committee. It is not our fault that Robin Hayes turned out this way. When we schemed to overthrow the duly elected state chairman on dubious grounds and replace him with Hayes, we had no idea that Hayes was one of Tom Steyer’s disciples. Well, we did know that he was tight with Karl Rove, but so is our golden boy, Dallas. Who knew that Robin Hayes was a closet environmentalist? Who thought he would betray Governor McCrory for his environmentalist friends? It is NOT our fault!

    Oh, and please reelect all your district chairmen and other Central Committee members so they can continue the NCGOP on this path.

  12. Robin Hayes seems to have been the most recent emissary of the environmentalists of the CCA to the McCrory administration, but he was not the first. That would have been John Skvarla, the non-Republican DENR Secretary in the McCrory administration, who was the CCA’s first water boy to the governor’s office. It was Skvarla who intervened with the governor’s on the first set of MFC appointments.

    With the game of musical chairs, Skvarla got shifted to being Secretary of the Department of Commerce, while a palace coup within the NCGOP inserted Robin Hayes as usurper NCGOP chairman. After that shift in positions, it became Hayes who was the CCA emissary to the governor’s office.

    Skvarla and Hayes can both take credit for helping Cooper win. If Hayes had an ounce of integrity, he would resign after being caught in this treachery and never darken the door of a GOP function ever again. Skvarla has never been a Republican and he can go back to running the environmental businesses he did before joining the McCrory administration.

  13. This is a completely irresponsible piece of journalism. Proclaiming that the MFC appointments lost the election for McCrory when he carried every coastal county in the state with the exception of Pasquotank, Washington and New Hanover?!

    McCrory garnered 71% of the vote in Currituck, 69% in Camden, 55% in Dare, 69% in Carteret, 65% in Onslow, and 60% in both Pender and Brunswick. I guess the commercial fishermen in Wake and Mecklenburg Counties brought down the Governor…

  14. When everything is said and done, McCrory ticked off a lot of Republicans with various decisions and actions. He had a slew of bad political and policy advisors. His chief of staff is a disaster of the first order. He made some bad appointments, especially to the State Board of Education. He really had no guiding ideology and his re-election campaign was very poorly run. Without a conservative legislature, his administration would have been an unmitigated moderate/liberal disaster. He simply was not prepared to be governor in this day and time. You’ve got to have strong convictions and a killer instinct–like Donald Trump showed us in defeating Hillary. McCrory came across as a wishy-washy Charlotte Republican who simply didn’t understand his own party or the state at large. This was all simply too much baggage to drag across the finish line on election day.

  15. McCrory so desperately craved being all things to all people, that neither side knew whether to trust him. He was against the Magistrate Ball and HB2, but then he came out swinging for HB2. Then he went on a campaign in favor of HB2 after it became law. Then just weeks before the election, he told Chuck Todd he actually didn’t support HB2, that had he vetoed it, the conservative legislature would have come up with something ‘far worse’. What kind of leadership is that? Throwing your own party under the bus! Reminds me of Hanoi Jane in a Vietcong tank.

  16. Let’s drain our swamp, install term limits, work for the people that’s how u got in office.

  17. If HB 2 had been the problem, we would not have kept our supermajority in the House, and Republicans would not have gained a seat in the Senate. The I-77 tolls lost McCrory a lot of support in that part of the State, cost us an otherwise very good member of the House, and caused some others to face tough races. I can well imagine the scenario you describe on the fisheries issues went hard against McCrory, also. Very unfortunate, but not really surprising. Ever heard of cutting off your nose to spite your face? Looks like there has been some of that going on on both sides of some issues.

  18. There are less than 2,500 active commercial fishermen in this state who caught and sold a dollars worth of fish within a year. They might influence 10,000 voters. Meanwhile, there are over one million participants in the recreational fishing industry which dwarfs the commercial industry in NC both in terms of participants and economic return to the state. This group could affect three or four million voters.

    Donald Trump was an early and loud critic of HB 2 and advocated it being repealed so we know that might have hurt McCrory with some voters.

    Robyn Hays was an advisor to the NCWF on the day he was made Republican state Chair so you can’t say it was a surprise or hidden fact by anyone.

    Two months before the election Roy Cooper issued a public statement advocating the rebuilding of the quality of our costal resources including a goal of making seafood once again abundant and accessible for the average citizen while maintaining a logical and sustainable commercial fishery. It was not negative. It was a positive piece suggesting that viable natural resources once did, and could once again, add to the quality of life for all NC citizens regardless of financial means.

    I know dozens of people who voted for Cooper because of that statement alone. Sometimes positive resonates more than negatives.

    I also know that paid political advisers to McCrory sensed this late in the campaign and those appointments were a direct and last minute attempt to keep the average NC citizen who possess a love for the coast and fishing with their grandchildren from all going to Cooper. But it was too late, voting had been going on for a week and over a million votes had already been cast.

    The 2016 election in NC revealed a great truth. In statewide elections, a candidate needs to pay attention to the recreational fishing industry and her votes in the millions. It is simply more than the commercial industry and her votes in the thousands.

    Pat McCrory taught us all that lesson and no twisting of the facts after the election is going to attempt to say a few thousand votes yields more political clout than a few million. That cat is forever out of the bag.

    Oh.. the CCA didn’t force McCrory on this issue in spite of all the pundits who like to make the CCA the boogie man. The CCA just answered the phone when McCrory advisers called in a panic at the last minute asking what he could do to keep some votes. Those advisers saw what I just described above happening across the state. People are tired of seeing commercial fishing practices and their results that have been banned or greatly controlled in all other states continuing in NC while fish stocks continue to decline. Nor does a majority enjoy seeing bottoms of our sounds being molded and voided of wild shellfish and grass beds by mechanical fishing gear.

    The recreational fishing industry incorporates huge numbers of people within NC and sometimes they do rise up. Not in punitive ways, but to reward positive outlooks on how things should be. But make no mistake, they can and will go to the polls! And on one day in 2016 they must certainty did!

    1. The CCA are environmentalists who claim the hat of recreational fishermen because that gives them access to some political appointments. Most ”recreational fishermen” are simply guys or gals with a fishing license who enjoy putting a line in the water occaisionally. There are a few of them in my family, but that has absolutely nothing to do with how they vote. Those ”recreational fishermen” in the CCA are rich dudes with fancy expensive boats and an attitude that they are big shots whose opinions matter more than those of others. They care nothing at all if their whims put an industry that has been part of North Carolina since colonial days out of business for good. In their arrogance, their whims matter more than the jobs of ordinary working people. For most ”recreational fihermen”, fish issues are very far down the list of what they vote on. It probably matters to a handful of the rich dudes.

      The commercial fishermen, on the other hand, depend on fishing to earn their living. Attacks on their industry are attacks on their being able to put food on their table for their families. This is an issue that in paramount in their voting and that of their families.

      That said, McCrory did hurt himself pandering to the CCA, but it could have been worse if those appointments came out earlier. With as much early voting as went on, many, like one poster above, had already voted before they learned of the appointments.

      Several coastal counties have sued the McCrory administration over its MFC’s draconian fishing rules on flounder, and a number of other counties have passed resolutions supporting the lawsuit. These local county commissioners not only know what is right but they also know which side of this issue local folks are on. They seem to know that a lot better than people around the governor.

      As to Cooper, he is financed by some of the most extreme environmentalists out there, so his approach will certainly be anything but balanced.

    2. David Sneed. Please compare all the electorate. Compare Dan’s numbers, and Bill Cook’s numbers. Look at the seat Beverly turned over to a very popular democrat. I know, personally, of thousands of votes, starting with mine, that were cast AGAINST Pat. The corruption has been pointed out, on a number of occasions by the state AG office. It has been highlighted in video, and the history of the CCA rank corruption, starting in Texas, spreading east, and flowing up the coast is well documented. Your predecessor was fired, as you will be, for not securing NC under a net ban, and a trawl ban. The CCA/RFA can not control Virginia, Maryland, and New Jersey, without buttoning NC up. Read the book, Wetland Riders, by Robert Fritchey. Look up Fritchey’s new book on Amazon. There lies the truth. The CCA/RFA/MFC pandered, and corrupt money, pay-to-play politics was alive and well. Now, your ilk has played right into what our organization has been stating for a long time: the CCA/RFA does not speak for the “recreational” fishermen, we do. The gig is up, Dave. Pushing a clown act “supplement” that restricted all anglers, and the public, from access to flounder, and now asking for a moratorium on striped bass, has shown your true colors. You wanted a statement for national that you were still in control in NC, before the election, because the judge in the supplement case has ruled against you twice. Your statement, because the MFC meeting immediately following the election had to have the full complement of puppets to hear the shrimp ban, has backfired by causing your boy Pat, to lose. Take solice in the fundraisers ya’ll had for Roy Cooper. Your big “donations”paid off. The haughty eye, and the pride of vanity will eventually cause a tremendous fall. Don’t quit selling your supplements.
      Britton Shackelford

  19. I’m sure the fishing issue, the SCV, and HB2 all played a role in McCrory’s defeat. However, for me, the biggest issue was the poorly-run campaign. In my county, the McCrory folks sent us around 200 yard signs and a handful of bumper stickers in mid-September…and that was it. At the same time, Dan Forest’s folks sent us signs, bumper stickers, shirt stickers, palm cards, t-shirts, etc. out the wazoo. They also sent us walk lists of homes they were targeting in our county, along with door hangers for each home. We attached our conservative sample ballots to those door hangers and completed every walk list and hung a door hanger on every home that we were allowed (some were in HOAs with no campaigning allowed). We also made up our own walk lists and completed those with the leftover door hangers. Finally, around Halloween, after we had completed almost all of our walk lists and delivered 95% of the campaign lit that had been sitting in our HQ, the McCrory folks sent us another handful of bumper stickers, a few t-shirts, and around 300 door hangers. No walk lists, no directions, no nothing. Gee, thanks. A lot of good THAT did. We got the door hangers out, but at that point, there was not much to do to change people’s minds…especially with only 300 door hangers. If McCrory’s folks had hired Hal Weatherman to run their campaign, Ol’ Roy Cooper would be planning his transition to private law practice in Rocky Mount right now instead of a transition to the Governor’s Mansion.

  20. More junk journalism from the Daily Haymaker. This reminds me of the work Nicole Revels did for the NC Watermen United group. Why didn’t y’all just let Britton Shackelford have a byline. Same Old Stuff, different day and writer.

    1. You’re so, so, so, silly, Rick. We have some wonderfully enlightening truth about to be delivered to the people of this state. Right to their livingroom. I know national is looking for some serious payback for all that money they have been spending in NC. Our canary said it was stated, at national, that it was an “untapped faucet of cash flowing to NC”. The only thing more important than cash to a corrupt politician is the vote. Write it on your forehead.

    2. Nicole did the work about the Commercial Fishermen and the stacking of the MFC after weeks of personal pleading from me. She did it totally volunteer basis because she was both making a name for herself in journalism and was moved by the beleaguered fishermens story. If Nicole got any money at all it was donation months after the fact and far less than the value of her service.

      I recommend you bully CCA folks leave her in peace with her family before she has to come out of retirement and kick your corporatist pay to play asses around again.

  21. The absolutely insane SCV license plate decision cost McCrory at least 20,000 votes. Even his own staff admits this.

  22. Ray Brown. One day the truth is bound to come pouring out of you. Reason: none has ever come forth, yet. Please read my reply to your pet, David Sneed. We feed people the best source of protein in the entire world, Ray. You, nor your gang, support the “recreational” angler! You represent less than 1 percent in the entire state. You advocate closing flounder, and now striped bass. The gig is up, Ray, Ray. You gambled, you lost, but again, take comfort in the corrupt dollars ya’ll spent on Roy. I guess you don’t think we knew about that? Silly boy. The trick is on you.
    Britton Shackelford

    1. Hmmm! So, the environmentalist left of the CCA was playing a double game, giving enough money to McCrory to buy the seats they wanted on the MFC, but putting their heavy money on someone totally in their corrupt left wing pocket, Roy Cooper? Looks like they suckered McCrory big time. They got their cake, the MFC appointments, out of McCrory, and got to eat it too, with getting their real preferred candidate, Cooper, elected.

      CCA Republicans in the legislature are Obama Republicans and they all need primaries from conservatives Lets take our party back and drain the swamp in Raleigh. The CCA are some of the most despicable swamp creatures there.

  23. Might would have been a different outcome if McCrory had jumped on the Trump train with those that respect free market capitalism (commercial fishing industry) instead of jumping on the train with the crony capitalist (CCA) that disrespect free market capitalism.

    Browny Douglas

  24. On the day that Pat McCrory made those MFC appointments he failed to defend his integrity. He abandoned right for WRONG and he knew it. For that, I feel sorry for him.

    Browny Douglas

    1. What type of person who fishes for fun would want his pleasure to interfere with another persons income? My answer to that question is a selfish self centered sob. But worse than that is politicians that help them in their endeavors. I voted for Pat knowing that he was on the take but not sorry that he lost. He had to know that those he reappointed and the organization they represented had both bases covered. The real losers are the lovers of seafood and those of us who provide it.

Comments are closed.