#NCSEN: The Battle of RTP (Post-Game)

XGR02-NE-072413-RTWI swear I had to convince myself repeatedly that this was NOT a Saturday Night Live skit.    The drive-bys subjected us AND the candidates with some moronic, leftist questions.  The candidates hit us with a lot of consultant-crafted soundbites.  On many occasions, they didn’t even actually answer the question.  And, as tends to happen when politicians open their mouths, we had some truth-stretching. 

The verdict.   For regular readers of this site, you know that we’re not enthused by either of the two major party candidates.  Though, there was a clear on-camera difference between Thom and Kay.  Tillis, the Republican — putting aside his goofy facial expression when he was introduced —
appeared calm, cool and well-prepared.  Senator Hagan, on the other hand, clearly lost her cool and spent a lot of time on the defensive.  For those introduced to these two for the first time tonight,  Tillis wiped up the floor with Hagan.  She showed her true, screaming feminist colors.  For those of us who know Thom a little better, we spent a good portion of an hour shaking our heads in disbelief.  In the end, I think it is safe to say that Tillis helped himself tonight, while Hagan experienced a setback. 

sockhurtContraceptives and Teacher recruitment.  The debate spent a wee bit too much time on two subjects that the US Senate has no business getting involved in.  I heard WAY more about birth control than I really care to.  Hagan blasted Tillis for supporting The Hobby Lobby court decision and declared him bent on depriving women of birth control pills.  Tillis — in one of his better moves — scolded her for confusing taxpayer support with access.  Speaker Thom spoke in favor of transferring birth control pills to over-the-counter status — thereby reducing their cost and increasing the supply and availability.  He blasted Hagan for being in the back pocket of big pharmaceuticals.  (I can’t believe he really went there.  Seriously? Have you seen the Tillis campaign financials? Have you been reading this site?) 

One of the weirdest moments of the evening came when moderator Norah O’Donnell asked the candidates about public school teacher recruitment.  Really?  Is this a school board race, or a US Senate race? 

BarryO in a dress.  Kay Hagan cited her selection by National Journal as ‘the most moderate senator.’ kayandbarryShe then descended into screeching, demagogic rants that evoked memories of Barry’s 2012 campaign stump speeches or California’s Barbara Boxer on any given day.  Hagan badmouthed ‘tax cuts for the rich’ and trumpeted ‘fighting for the middle class.’  It’s not the best way to go when running for reelection in a state Obama lost in 2012 and filled with people who have lost their jobs and livelihoods thanks to Obama-nomics. If you’re going to spin that you’re ‘moderate,’  try saying something that sounds remotely moderate. 

Thom Tillis, anti-Establishment.  This part of the program was one of the hardest to swallow.  Speaker Thom talked about working across the aisle and winning the confidence of his House colleagues so that they would later elect him speaker.  Tillis got to the House by primarying and knocking off John Rhodes, a conservative GOP maverick, who regularly railed publicly against corruption in state government.  Tillis was recruited by the notorious Charlotte ”uptown crowd”  who were angry at Rhodes for talking terrible about their friend, House speaker Jim Black, and not bringing home more of other people’s money.

Tillis got elected Republican whip in his second term.  His elevation and promotion was based, largely in part , on his connections with the big-money Chroveamber crowd in uptown Charlotte.  From January 2011 to the present, Tillis called the shots about what did and did not happen in the NC House — hardly anti-establishment. 

Tillis was recruited to run for the Senate by Karl Rove. His campaign report is loaded with cash from sitting senators and congressmen, DC-based lobbyists, and long-time GOP establishment donors from across the nation.  Tillis has been attending, for months, fundraisers at the offices of DC lobbyists, the National Republican Senatorial Committee, and The Capitol Hill Club.  So, blasting ol’ Kay for being too close to the DC establishment is, um, a bit muchthomfold

Minimum Wage. Norah O’Donnell targeted Tillis by asking him if he thought a minimum wage of $7.25 in North Carolina was enough to live on.  In a good move, Tillis derided the left for seeking a minimum wage society instead of getting the government out of the way and pushing for universal prosperity.  Hagan twisted, to her advantage, an earlier comment from Tillis about people in western North Carolina not deserving the same wage as workers in Boston.  I hate to lecture Madam senator.  She spent a good chunk of her time telling us how smart she is, and how she used to be a bank vice president.  During her time at the bank, I would have thought she might have learned something about the differences in cost of living in various regions of the country and world. 

Tillis said minimum wage decisions need to be made at the local and state level.  I would have preferred hearing him assign that duty to the free market itself. 

kay and barryThe environment.  Tillis blasted Hagan for supporting costly EPA regulations.  Never mind that he backed alternative energy mandates in 2007 that jacked up utility bills.  He even moved to kill an effort to repeal those mandates this past legislative session.  *I guess some regulations that jack up costs and kill jobs  — in the name of “saving the planet” — are OK.*

Moderate Rebels.   How do you behave moderately, while, at the same time, being a rebel?  Anyway, Hagan said she favored “weaponizing” moderate rebels in Syria.  Whomever that is.

Amnesty.  Tillis reassured his audience that he is no fan of amnesty for illegal aliens.  He criticized Hagan for voting for the so-called ”Gang of Eight” immigration reform bill.  Hagan responded by saying it was not about amnesty and more about border security.  She pointed out that the bill was sponsored by Republicans Marco Rubio, John McCain (who endorsed Tillis), and South Carolina’s Lindsey Graham (who also endorsed Tillis).  Hagan blasted Tillis for not having “a plan.”   The subjects brought up HERE conveniently didn’t come up during the debate.

ObamaCare.  Tillis went after Hagan for saying repeatedly that you could keep your health plan, if you wanted to, under ObamaCare.  Hagan responded by point out that she — upon realizing the,um, dishonesty of insurance companies — pushed through a law forcing insurance companies to make people’s health plans permanent.  So, thanks to her, you could keep your plan.  

Tillis also mentioned the roughly 475,000 North Carolinians who did not apparently have that option. Before you get too excited about the GOP nominee being an anti-ObamaCare warrior, remember that he pushed through the House legislation to establish an ObamaCare-inspired state health exchange. 



22 thoughts on “#NCSEN: The Battle of RTP (Post-Game)

  1. The left no doubt planned it this way, but Wednesday night is church night in most towns—certainly in Baptist churches across the state. The TIllis campaign should have insisted on a different night. But it probably never occurred to them. I’m sure it occurred to the leftwing press looking to give Hagan every possible advantage.

    1. If they had been competent they would also have made sure there was a balance in who prepared the questions. Leaving it to Big Media, means they will have a pronounced leftwing bias.

  2. Wednesday, Thursday, what ever night, if I were Hagan, I would be hoping no one watched. I thought Thom’s raised eyebrow at the introduction odd, until Kay started speaking. Clearly off her game, she repeated the same lies we hear in her commercials, over, and over, and over again. Touting her mastery of numbers, went on to display a complete lack of understanding of them. Does she really think the middle class survives on the minimum wage? Does quoting our national rankings, reached while she was in the NCGA, make sense? Do those strange, short armed hand movements, and even stranger speaking pattern, help her connect with North Carolinians? Does she think the Hobby Lobby Police are hanging around CVS, and preventing women from purchasing contraceptives?? Kay must make us forget recent history. Thom did a good job of reminding us of that history last night. Some things he said, caused “me” to awkwardly raise one eyebrow, but he clearly owned Hagan. Wish both would’ve clearly answered the asked question, but who does any more. Norah thinks they both brought their A game. ???? Looked more like Edwards and Faircloth to me. The exception being, Lauch told the truth. He just didn’t do it very well.

    1. Tillis missed some major opportunities, probably because not being a genuine conservative, he was not up on issues. One was Hobby Lobby, where Hagan told the usual liberal lie that it involved contraception generally. Tillis should have pointed out that it only involved the ”morning after” abortion pill. He should have then pointed out that Hagan favored government mandating ”morning after” abortion pills for everyone.

  3. Painful to watch Hagan. She seemed like a political gerbil on a wheel; birth control, teachers, military, birth control, teachers, military. Oh, I forgot to mention that she reminded us how smart she is. How this woman ever made in onto the state scene is beyond me, but she is not ready for prime time on the national scene and should be voted out of office. I am no Tillis fan, but after watching this farce of a debate Hagan has to go.

  4. Whew! Kay looked awfully angry and tired last night! Not her best. Totally got mopped up last night.

    Claiming she is a moderate is a bigger whopper than “if you like your plan, you can keep your plan.”

    Where does Kay stand on late term abortion?

  5. So, between the two big government, statist, crony establishment candidates fond of half-truths or straight-up falsehoods… I can choose between “shrill pompous ” and “non-shrill pompous”?

    Awesome. *sigh*

    (I’m glad I didnt watch this – it sounds painful).

    1. Well At, if you want to know what the large majority of LIV’s are going to base their vote on this November, ya gotta watch these “debates”.

  6. And again I say, “Write in John Rhodes”. 25% voting for other than the twins would lead to some fun commentary from the twins owners.

  7. Yet, Sr. Tillis was a No Show at many major Republican Primary debates. No doubt based on the destruction of a state immigration enforcement bill (H786) that was watered down to its true intent, that of exempting employers from E-Verify. A remarkable audacious slap to conservative Republicans. Tillis will be at the forefront of crony capitalism if elected to the U.S. Senate. Delivering illegal labor legislation to his NC special interest campaign financers. Illegal Alien driver’s licenses are set to roll in 2015. A parting gift from Sr. Tillis.

    1. I am sure he collected a lot of pesos from the $pecial interest$ for those betrayals of the American citizens.

      Stopping illegal immigration is a huge issue for me, and it would just about make me physically sick to vote for ANY of the three candidates on the ballot for US Senate. I have been hoping that Tillis would have a ”come to Jesus” moment on this issue, but it does not look like that is going to happen.

  8. The liberal Thillis was showing his shifty side. It is obvious that if we want a senator to stand against amnesty then we need Kay Hagan. Kay will stand with us on gun control and abortion. We need to let Karl Rove that he cannot tell us what to do or whom to elect. I would rather have Kay any day over Thillis & Rove. Voting for anyone except Thom Thillis will send a message to Karl Rove! Or just stay home and tell Rove you are not interested in his politics!

      1. But Raphael, we are on the same side!

        We are both fighting to keep Karl Rove from picking our United States Senator.

        We are united in our cause and we must stand shoulder to shoulder and arm in arm against Rove.

        Working together will keep Thom Thillis out of the United States Senate.

        Together and united we must be.

        1. Well, no. I want a Senator who represents conservative principles. You seem to want a big government liberal. I would hope that Tillis does some things to earn conservative votes, but regrettably I am seeing few signs of that so far. In fact, he seems to be doing the opposite.

  9. About the only reason I’m voting for TT is that I’m somewhat confident he won’t vote to confirm Chuck Schumer or Elizabeth Warren as our next Supreme Court justice if something should happen to Scalia, Thomas, Alito, Roberts or (sigh) Kennedy in the next 2 years. And if you think Kommissar Obama won’t do something like nominate someone like that…

  10. If Greg Brannon was the nominee I think he would be leading Hagan by double digit margin. Hagan claims to be a moderate and Tillis claims to be a conservative. The voters do not seem to be too enthused by either. I think the Moral Monday group will get more of their voters to the polls so it will probably be Hagan who wins by default.

    1. There is a real enthusiasm problem among GOP voters. Those who are voting for Tillis say they are doing so to ”beat Hagan” or to ”fire Reid”. I have yet to hear the first one say they are doing so because they think Tilllis would be a good senator. Many others just take a look at Tillis’ history and say ”yecch!”.

      Mid-term elections are turn-out elections and the party that wins is the one which turns out its base. Tillis is not the sort of candidate who will turn out the GOP base. Just about any of the other primary candidates would have been better, but the best would have been a couple of GOP leaders who thought about running but did not file, Lt. Governor Dan Forest and former Ambassador Jim Cain.

      I think a lot of the problem has been meddling by DC party bosses who were more interested in getting someone who would be a Mitch McConnell yes-man within the GOP caucus than they were in getting someone who could actually beat Hagan, Rove, the NRSC, and McConnell are all to blame. In the future, our party leaders need to tell these meddlers to stay the heck out of our primary.

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