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#66: "I'm Clay Aiken, and I Approved This Message!"

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Latest Gold Circle email from Ebonie Pittman:

Hello, CA4NC Gold Members!

I hope you all had a wonderful weekend. It is time to reveal last week's raffle winner. Everyone, please join me in congratulating CAROL McCURRY of Westbrook, Maine. Carol, you are the recipient of a personalized copy of the July 2003 issue of Rolling Stone magazine, featuring Clay on its cover. I hope you enjoy!

CA4NC Gold Circle Weekly Raffle #3

This week’s raffle prize includes:

  • A Clay for North Carolina T-shirt with the new campaign logo. This is the first shirt of its kind!

The next raffle winner will be announced on Monday, July 21st.

Thank you again and good luck!

Ebonie Pittman

Clay Aiken For North Carolina

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From Twitter. Clay was at a restaurant in Dunn.


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From Facebook last night:

Sweet Frog Dunn:

We had a special guest stop by tonight: Clay Aiken! Thank you so much for stopping by and we hope to see you again!!

(Please tag us in any photos you may have.)

Thanks Linda Brown!


And for your daily dose of "adorable," I present the following:

Katie Hughes

2 hours ago near Dunn, NC

We'll as we were in Cracker Barrel celebrating my gmas 70th bday party, I look over to see Clay Aiken! I had to get Waylon's pic with him! Lol happy birthday Gma!


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If this wasn't so sad it would be funny! Neanderthal?

@MeneuxBrown: Ellmers so wrong on so many levels #YesAllWomen @ClayAiken @ClayforNC

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I hope this is true.

@CraigJ_NandO: Clay Aiken reports $450K+ raised in 2nd quarter. #ncpol #nc2 #congressopdbas

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First post: what century is she from? I happen to know how to CREATE pie charts, thank you very much.

Second post: squeeee! I too hope that's true! And from what I'm reading, that might be enough for the DCCC (Democratic Congressional Campaign Committee) to pay attention, and throw their support toward Clay. Woohoo!!!!!!!

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That piece is being picked up by a lot of sites now! Hee Renee just hand Clay the voters why don't you!

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Nice email.


This is huge news. We just got word we outraised Renee Ellmers’s special interest-fueled campaign in the second fundraising quarter. Our campaign raised a whopping $450,000 — and we’re proud it came from the grassroots support of people like you.

It’s not just about a dollar amount. Our strong fundraising quarter shows that people are encouraged by Clay’s message of working across party lines to pass meaningful legislation to get our country moving again.

It shows that our thousands of supporters know this is a campaign we can win.

Renee Ellmers said she was going to Washington to fix things, but instead she’s proven she cares more about serving her party leadership than she does the people of North Carolina’s Second District. Ellmers is out of touch, and Clay is speaking to the needs of our district.

That's why we won today, and that's why we'll win in November.

The special interests backing Ellmers have been scared of Clay’s candidacy from the start. But with this big news today, we can be sure they’re going to work even harder to try to stop our momentum. We have to be prepared to fight back.

Help us keep up the momentum by contributing $100, $50, or $25 today.

Today’s a huge day for our campaign. Thanks for being a part of it.


Ellen Zeng

Campaign Manager

Clay Aiken for North Carolina

Paid for by Clay Aiken for North Carolina

Clay for North Carolina

PO Box 3809

Cary NC 27519-3809 United States

If you believe you received this message in error or wish to no longer receive email from us, please unsubscribe.

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I love that the Ellmer's "women and pie charts" story is gaining traction -- timed perfectly with the fundraising news for Clay!

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Renee has responded to the article

Update: The congresswoman’s office issued a statement today, responding to the quote that appeared in the Washington Examiner’s article:

“This is absolutely ridiculous and the quote in question was taken completely out of context. I am a woman, and find it both offensive and sexist to take my words and redefine them to imply that women need to be addressed at a lower level.

“The point of Friday’s panel was to have an open conversation regarding how we communicate our values and principles to women across this country. Unfortunately, certain leftist writers have decided to take this important opportunity and engage in ‘gotcha’ journalism. There were so many positive ideas and solutions proposed during this discussion that sought to empower women. But instead of focusing on these positive steps, some writers are cherry-picking words and using predetermined agendas to attack Republicans and increase their readership.

“It is a shame that such an important moment for addressing solutions and empowering women was used to attack the open exchange of ideas. In answering a question regarding how Republicans can improve their messaging, I took the opportunity to note that everyone comes from different backgrounds and experiences - and our messaging should do the same.

“If there is a problem, who is perpetuating it? Was it a room full of women laughing, bonding and sharing solutions - or a liberal woman reporter attacking the event and taking it to a dark place that does not exist?”

Readers can, of course, draw their own conclusions about Ellmers’ statement, though I’d note that this doesn’t deny the congresswoman made the comments, only that the comments were taken “out of context.”

‘m not sure how a multi-paragraph, multi-sentence quote can be taken “completely” out of context. It’s also unclear how this can be fairly labeled “cherry-picking words."

Edited by ldyjocelyn
edited to fix quoting...ldyj

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In other political news, Keith Crisco died of heart disease.

Medical Examiner Releases Details About Death Of Clay Aiken Primary Opponent

Medical Examiner Releases Details About Death Of Clay Aiken Primary Opponent

Posted By Alex Pappas On 3:50 PM 07/14/2014 In | No Comments

Keith Crisco — who at the time of his shocking death was in a too-close-to call North Carolina Democratic congressional primary with former American Idol contestant Clay Aiken — died due to heart disease, according to the medical examiner’s report obtained by The Daily Caller.

Crisco, 71, died as he walked inside his home in Asheboro on May 12, according to the report. A week earlier, Crisco ran in the Democratic primary for the 2nd congressional district seat.

The race had not been called at the time of Crisco’s death, though Aiken was leading the former secretary of the N.C. Department of Commerce by 369 votes.

The medical examiner report lists “hypertensive and arterioscleortic cardiovascular disease” as the probable cause of death. Crisco, according to the report, had a history of high blood pressure.

On the day of his death, Crisco told his wife he was going to do some errands in his vehicle. He returned home at about 1 p.m.

“His wife heard him arrive home,” the examiner wrote. “She heard him enter the door and heard him when he fell coming into the house. When she got to him, she said he was gasping for breath.”

Crisco, wearing a a blue shirt and khaki pants, fell near the front door.

The report labeled Crisco’s death natural and stated that the examiner did not find any abrasions or blood on the body.

Aiken, who temporarily suspended his campaign because of Crisco’s death, was subsequently declared the winner of the primary. He is set to face incumbent Republican Rep. Renee Ellmers in November.

“I am stunned and deeply saddened by Keith Crisco’s death,” Aiken said at the time. “Keith came from humble beginnings. No matter how high he rose – to Harvard, to the White House and to the Governor’s Cabinet – he never forgot where he came from.

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@JesseLehrich: I think @RepReneeEllmers is a Todd Akin politician in a Clay Aiken world...

  • Like 1

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Another email, this one from Nick:

Hi Everyone,

Now that the dust has settled from the 2nd quarter, I've finally had time to roll out CA4NC Social Fundraising. Your response to the CA4NC Membership Circle program was incredible and it's clear to me that this group of people is incredibly important to the success of the campaign. The majority of you have supported Clay for over 10 years now and I wanted to send this out to you first before we do the launch next week.

With our new social fundraising tool, everyone can provide the campaign the important financial support that Clay needs to win in November. With less than 4 months left before the election, time is of the essence! Please follow the link below to learn about CA4NC Social Fundraising, the CA4NC Ambassador program, the rest of the CA4NC Social Fundraising benefits, and how to immediately activate your networks!

I can't thank you enough for your support!


Nick Leisey

The link information:

CA4NC Social Fundraising / CA4NC Ambassador Program

We’re incredibly excited to officially announce the Clay Aiken for NC (CA4NC) Social Fundraising campaign and CA4NC Ambassador Program! Our team has been working tirelessly to put these programs together and create another way for Clay’s supporters to be an integral part of the campaign.

Why CA4NC Social Fundraising?

After the success of the CA4NC Gold, Platinum, and Diamond Circle membership programs, it’s obvious that the collective power of Clay’s supporters is a valuable resource, one that could very well be the extra push that he needs to win in November. Up to this point, many of you have generously supported the campaign by making important donations – most of you on a continuous basis. Our CA4NC Platinum and Diamond members have even reached the legal limit for any individual during the General Election cycle. This alone is amazing and our gratitude can’t ever be fully communicated, but we’re even more impressed with the phone calls and emails requesting how people can do more.

Social fundraising is the answer. EVERYONE has the ability to activate his or her social networks and raise money to support Clay’s campaign, regardless of your ability to personally contribute. In fact, supporting Clay’s campaign through social fundraising gives you the ability to get involved at a greater level than you could ever consider through making a traditional donation.

How does CA4NC Social Fundraising work?

It’s very simple. Once you set up an account at:, you will be able to create your own unique fundraising page, set a fundraising goal, track your progress, complete special tasks, earn badges, and see where you rank among the rest of Clay’s supporters. Social fundriasing is an innovative tool that allows individuals to reach out to their friends, family, colleagues, and any other contact they may have using various social tools: Email, Facebook, and even by phone. Anywhere you can share a link to your fundraising page is an option!

And why not have a little fun!?!? Who will be the top CA4NC social fundraiser each week? Month? Overall? How much will they raise? Clay will be watching closely and from time-to-time reach out and express his gratitude personally!

What is the CA4NC Ambassador Program?

Any supporter who is able to raise $10,000 through CA4NC Social Fundraising will be recognized as a CA4NC Ambassador. Supporters who reach this goal will receive the following benefits*:

· Private lunch with Clay, a guest of your choice, and a member of the CA4NC campaign staff.

· Entry into "CA4NC Ambassador Black Tie". This is a CA4NC Ambassador only dinner and reception after the election.

Is there recognition for reaching any other fundraising goals?

Absolutely. In addition to knowing that each and everyone of you is an incredible asset to Clay’s campaign, the following recognition plan has been put into place:

· Raise $500: CA4NC T-Shirt

· Raise $1000: Signed and personalized Map of NC’s 2nd District

· Raise $2,500: Entry into CA4NC election night watch party

· Raise $5,000: Google Hangout / Skype session with Clay

· Raise $10,000: CA4NC Ambassador Status


You do not need to contact us prior to joining CA4NC Social Fundriasing. Please click the link above to create your fundraising page. If you have questions before beginning, please fill out the form below and a member of the CA4NC staff will contact you.

* Contributions that have already been made by CA4NC Platinum and Diamond Circle members will count towards the progress for this goal. Private lunches will only occur pending favorable election results. The CA4NC Ambassador Black Tie will take place after the election and the specific date will be determined by CA4NC campaign staff. Travel/lodging not included. CA4NC reserves the right to deny admittance to any events based on reasonable factors.

And the latest news section from Clay's webpage:

RELEASE: Aiken Campaign Reports Over $450K in Contributions in Q2

Posted July 15, 2014

CARY, N.C. – Clay Aiken’s campaign in North Carolina’s Second Congressional District today reported over $450,000 in contributions in the second fundraising quarter. The quarter began April 1 and ended June 30.

The campaign received over 2,700 individual contributions in Q2.

“Americans and North Carolina voters are tired of a do-nothing Congress, and our campaign’s strong fundraising quarter shows that people are encouraged by Clay’s message of working across party lines to pass meaningful legislation to get our country moving again,” said Clay Aiken for North Carolina campaign manager Ellen Zeng.

“Renee Ellmers is part of the problem in Washington. She said she was going to Washington to fix things, but instead she’s proven she cares more about serving her party leadership than she does the people of the Second District. Our campaign will continue to hold Renee Ellmers accountable for her failed leadership and misplaced priorities.”

The campaign reported $396,766.20 in receipts from April 17 to June 30. The campaign previously reported $53,525.45 in receipts in the April pre-primary report detailing contributions from April 1 to April 16. Total contributions for the second fundraising quarter amount to $450,291.65.

The Aiken campaign has raised over $580,000 from over 6,000 individual contributions since Aiken announced his candidacy on Feb. 5, 2014.

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I know! I thought when he went there, he always knows how to find the favorite local place, and then boom, now it is gone.

There was a place like that in Penn Yan that got destroyed in a flood this spring--just a frame and a lot of water, but they were able to rebuild with some money obtained through an on-line fundraiser, and a lot of local help cleaning up and doing the work. They were back open in a few months. They did have help from the local Mennonite community, who could probably build a house from scratch in a day if they had all the "parts" handy. I hope that will happen with this place, but the article gives me the impression that while the place is old, the owner is new?? Anyway, it's sad.

Thanks everyone for the birthday wishes!! I kind of overdid it and had to rest my hands, but they are making a comeback. It's just the kind of thing that takes a very long time and a lot of patience. No more novellas for awhile. :blush:

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There's audio now of Renee Ellmer's comments, via the author of the article who broke the story:

Ashe Schow @AsheSchow · 10m

Here are @RepReneeEllmers remarks in full, with audio:

Haven't listened to it, but I should at some point. From what I'm reading, though...oooooo boy.

Also, Ashe Schow tweeted this, in response to people accusing her of working for Clay:

Ashe Schow ‏@AsheSchow 17m

Guys, since I've already been outed as a liberal plant, I'm going to confess:

I've been working for Clay Aiken this entire time.

And for some humor regarding Renee's comments:


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JMH so sorry I missed your birthday. I hope you had a great one. I'm just so thrilled to see you back. I missed your voice. But take it easy now!!

Too funny that I read about Ellmers on my facebook page - a Maddow blog - and came here for the details. Good to hear about Clay's fundraising.

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If anyone here feels like donating to Clay's political effort -- I did set up a fundraising page for him. (I know, I'm a sheeple in regards to Clay...) Anyway, if you can legally contribute (sorry Canadians, I truly am) and can spare as much as $5, I'd appreciate it.

Link to ldyjocelyn's page

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New email!


We’re used to out-of-touch politicians making offensive remarks about women. But it’s a little more shocking when the offensive remark about women comes from, well, a woman.

Renee Ellmers is the second-term Congresswoman running against Clay Aiken in November. She’s got a tough fight to keep her seat, and it just got a lot tougher with the insensitive remarks she made while participating in a conservative women’s panel last week.

“Men do tend to talk about things on a much higher level,” Ellmers said. “…We need our male colleagues to understand that if you can bring it down to a woman’s level and what everything that she is balancing in her life – that’s the way to go.”

I agree that women do a lot of balancing in their lives. And we could all use more hours in the day. I wish I had more hours in my day when I juggled ambassadorships to 7 countries and co-founded 2 banks. But what does Congresswoman Ellmers think women need more time for?

Women want “more time in the morning to get ready,” she said.

Unbelievable. Even by Washington standards.

And when Ellmers was called out for these insensitive comments, she decided it best to attack the character and motives of someone she described as a “liberal woman reporter.” A reporter who previously worked at the conservative Heritage Foundation and the Burlington County Republican Committee.

We get enough name calling and finger pointing in the halls of Congress. Hearing excuses from our political leaders is exhausting. And Renee Ellmers is proving to be the ringleader for excuses and finger pointing.

I hope you’ll join me in supporting Clay Aiken by contributing $50 today.

Representatives like Renee Ellmers are failing our country, our state, and women. We can do better.


Jeanette Hyde

Former U.S. Ambassador to Barbados

Founder, North State Bank

Founder, Triangle Bank

P.S. You can read Ellmers’s full remarks and listen to the audio by clicking here.

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