A SEVENTH DISTRICT CAMPAIGN COMMENTARY
By Verne Strickland
If they never held another debate, the message would still be crystal clear – Mike McIntyre is not right for North Carolina or the Seventh Congressional District.
If political ads were banished from the air, we would still swear by this belief – Mike McIntyre is not right for the people of Southeastern North Carolina.
If the entire campaign were called off immediately, we would still know this – Mike McIntyre is not right for us today nor will he be tomorrow. Or ever again.
But let’s use the most recent debate, as sort of a launching pad for this discussion. It was version #2, staged August 27 in Kenansville.
While the first Pantano/McIntyre talkathon was more of a slugfest, this one featured more finesse, more cerebral content, more fancy footwork.
For example, a front-row observer at the impressive James Sprunt Community College amphitheater noted that, during some of the diciest infighting, a nervous Mike McIntyre did a tap dance under the table that could have put him in a tie for ninth place on ‘Dancing With the Stars’.
It was that kind of a night.
Mike talks the talk. He dances the dance. But he does not walk the walk.
He is not right for America. I think he was at one time. He was a paragon of virtue, devoted to hard work, answering only to his conscience.
Times have changed. Washington does not thrive these days on selfless service, but on manipulating the power structure, where cunning politicians use the federal hog trough to further personal aims.
Mike McIntyre plays the game with aplomb — sidestepping the tough decisions, casting votes of questionable merit, but rarely showing the grit to publicly defend them.
In fact, even in public debate, he denies that he cast those votes, claiming to his constituents that he is a tenacious conservative fighting for solid American values.
Mr. Mike has become a sheep in wolf’s clothing. At his core he is a decent guy. This has to be tearing him apart.
The record tells the true story. Our homegrown congressman is quietly going along with the liberals who own the national Democratic Party, accepting their favors and protection.
Mike has become a money mule, lugging millions in federal (taxpayer) dollars back to the district from whence those dollars came, buying the votes of grateful recipients who obediently keep him in office, where he votes for Nancy Pelosi’s agenda over 90% of the time. But conveniently, unabashedly, he denies it.
Around and around it goes. It’s a lavish pork buffet. And we are picking up the tab.
It has been a sad transformation. The idealistic young Lumberton native first went to the U.S. Congress in 1996 to represent North Carolina’s conservative Seventh Congressional District – then an impregnable Democratic stronghold.
While he pledged to vacate his seat after his sixth term, he is now serving his seventh, and scrambling feverishly to notch an eighth term.
It must be conceded that his longevity and seniority have bought him clout on a number of important Congressional committees, where he has served with dogged determination.
But, if he ever approached the job with passion, the passion is gone. He seems to be constantly in a defensive posture. I don’t feel he really believes in the work he is doing in his job as our congressman. And I somehow surmise that he secretly loathes the people who are leading him around by the nose.
How can Mike claim to be the voice of the Seventh? He never speaks. Many cannot recall the last time – if ever – that he rose to champion his own votes on the floor of the U.S. House of Representatives.
This is Mute Mike.
We should add that many of the crispy dollars which have gushed into the coffers of the U.S. Treasury have originated in the Peoples Republic of China, increasing the possibility of manipulation of U.S. policies by a scheming foreign power which wants to wreck America.
It’s a dangerous game by any measure.
The McIntyre penchant for deficit spending plays into the hands of Barack Obama and his socialization of our nation, and gives aid and comfort to the arrogant liberal Nancy Pelosi, whose disastrous agenda touts big government – and the bigger and more monolithic the better!
Mike McIntyre conservative? Hardly. You ain’t always what you say you are, especially when you act like you say you ain’t.
America can’t afford Mike McIntyre and his kind anymore.
After the Kenansvile debate ended, I wandered through the crowd, and picked up some interesting interviews, including this little exchange with Melvin Williams, chairman of the Democratic Party in District Seven, who once predicted Mike McIntyre will win this election by a “huge margin.”
Strickland: “Mr. Williams, how do you feel your candidate fared in the debate tonight?”
Williams: “I think Mike did a terrific job. He always is able to explain his ideas.”
Strickland: And what about Ilario Pantano?”
Williams: “I think Mr. Pantano is a very good speaker.”
Strickland: “You left a lot unsaid.”
Williams: “That’s right. I did.”
And so does Mike McIntyre. That’s becoming a relevant issue in this campaign. The incumbent leaves much unsaid.
Maybe he doesn’t need to explain who he is. His constituents are finding out for themselves.
Our Seventh District congressman has become a relic and a Pelosi clone. The man says he’s not a quitter. But he should be.
And if he won’t vacate on his own, it’s time to enforce term limits via the ballot box.
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