Monday, September 27, 2010

Johnson shooting for cash with Young Guns

Republican 8th District candidate Harold Johnson is going to Washington this week to meet with GOP officials -- and replenish his campaign coffers.

Johnson, 69, is one of 26 "Young Guns" invited to meetings with House Republican leaders and GOP donors from Tuesday to Thursday.

Johnson was named this month as one of the 78 candidates in the Young Guns program.

Johnson spokesman Bryan Holladay said the candidate will meet with donors who can help him offset Democratic spending in the race. The Democratic Congressional Campaign committee and state Democratic Party have spent at least $300,000 on TV ads in support of Democratic Rep. Larry Kissell.

The National Republican Congressional Committee, which has spent $128,000 against S.C. Democrat John Spratt, has yet to weigh in on Johnson's behalf. An independent conservative group, Americans for Job Security, has spent $550,000 against Kissell.

Friday, September 17, 2010

Free Market Warrior meets Dr. Seuss

Loren Spivack has made a career of selling conservative-themed novelties, from bumper stickers to bobbleheads. Now the so-called "Free Market Warrior" has gone into publishing.

Spivack was in Rock Hill today handing out copies of his book, "The New Democrat" by "Dr. Truth." It's designed to look like Dr. Seuss' "Cat in the Hat," it features President Obama as the cat.

Dedicated to Glenn Beck ("Who inspires us all"), the book is a rhymed parody of the Obama administration. ("Our Founding fathers / Would turn over in their graves /If they could see now / How their successor behaves.)"

Spivack gave a copy to RNC Chairman Michael Steele in Rock Hill. To see more about the $20 book, go to

Wednesday, September 15, 2010

Pelosi grabs Carolina headlines

A week after a Republican "Fire Pelosi" bus tour rolls through North Carolina, Democratic U.S. House Speaker Nancy Pelosi herself comes to South Carolina.
Pelosi, of San Francisco, will speak to the Charleston NAACP on Sept. 25.

Tomorrow night in Fayetteville, Republican Congressional candidate Harold Johnson will join national GOP chairman Michael Steele on the "Fire Pelosi" tour. Earlier, Steele will hold a similar rally in Raleigh with two Triangle-area GOP candidates.

Pelosi has been red meat for Republicans. Recent national polls put Congressional job approval as low as 21 percent.

Tuesday, September 14, 2010

D.A. candidate returns -- and debates

Republican Andrew Murray returns Thursday from a two-month stint with the U.S. Coast Guard, just in time for a candidate forum with Democratic opponent Michael Barnes.

Not long after he returns, Murray will join Barnes at the NAACP/John S. Leary Bar forum at Little Rock AME Zion Church, 401 N. McDowell Street. It also features candidates for Superior and District Court judge.

The forum runs from 6 p.m. to 8:30 p.m.

Murray, who has spent 30 years in the Coast Guard and Coast Guard Reserves, was called to active duty in July to help with cleanup efforts from the BP oil spill.

This will be the first forum in months for the two D.A. candidates.

Thursday, September 09, 2010

Pro-business group weighs in against Kissell

In what would be the first outside involvement in the 8th District congressional race, a pro-business group called Americans for Job Security plans to start running $600,000 worth of TV ads against Democratic U.S. Rep. Larry Kissell.

It also plans to spend $800,000 on ads against Rep. Bob Etheridge in the 2nd District. The 30-second ads are scheduled to start Tuesday.

The ads, which will run for a month, are expected to criticize their votes for the federal stimulus and other programs.

"Government spending is crippling the economy," said Steve DeMaura, the group's president. "Washington has refused to listen to the people of North Carolina and job creators across the country. When we said 'no' to the so-called stimulus package because it would ultimately threaten job creation, Rep. Larry Kissell voted 'yea.'"

DeMaura told that as of mid-August, his group had spent $6.3 million on the 2010 elections. In the S.C. GOP gubernatorial primary, it attacked Gresham Barrett, who lost a runoff to Nikki Haley.

Kissell spokesman Christopher Schuler said the campaign is puzzled by the attack.

"The Congressman has a lengthy record of standing up for small businesses time and time again," he said. "That's why the Chamber of Commerce thanked him for his vote for the stimulus, his vote against cap and trade, and his votes against the healthcare bill.

"You can look at last week's groundbreaking at Celgard to see that the Stimulus is creating jobs here in North Carolina."

Wednesday, September 08, 2010

Dueling polls in the 8th District

Republican Harold Johnson's campaign is touting a new internal poll that shows him narrowly trailing 8th District Democratic Rep. Larry Kissell by 5 percentage points. "This is a real shot in the arm for all of us," Johnson said. "Obviously this race is very competitive."

Not surprisingly, the poll differs from an internal poll for Kissell two weeks ago that showed the freshman Democrat with a 17-point lead.

Both surveys suggest the race is running counter to national and state trends, at least for now.

Recent polls on show Republicans with a lead of as many as 13 points on the generic Congressional ballot. Raleigh's Public Policy Polling found voters favor Republicans in generic legislative races by eight points.

Despite the absence of an independent poll, the 8th District is considered North Carolina's only real toss-up contest by many analysts.

Kissell spokesman Christopher Shuler dismissed the latest GOP poll. It was done by Public Opinion Strategies, the same company that showed Kissell trailing Republican Rep. Robin Hayes a few weeks before the 2008 election. Kissell won by 10 percentage points.

Tuesday, September 07, 2010

Shazam! Even Sheriff Andy takes a hit in poll

Poor 'ol Andy. According to the latest from Raleigh's Public Policy Polling, even Andy Griffith isn't going unscathed this election year. Here's polling director Tom Jensen:

"You know how bad things are for Democratic political figures these days? Even Andy Griffith's poll numbers have seen a significant decline in the last 2 years.Our latest North Carolina poll found Griffith at 44/22 in the state for a net favorability of +22. That represents a 25 point decline from June of 2008 when Griffith was at a net +47 (56/9.) There's not much doubt that it's Griffith's forays into politics, most recently in support of the health care bill, that are driving down his poll numbers. His 53% favorability with Democrats right now is only slightly down from 57% in the June 2008 poll. But with Republicans he's dropped all the way from 57% to 35%. He's only barely on positive ground with GOP voters, as 31% of them see him unfavorably.Of course Bev Perdue, Kay Hagan, and Richard Burr would all die to have Griffith's poll numbers. They may be down but North Carolinians still like him a whole lot better than any elected official in the state."