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merrieeee

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

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Sleeping in the afternoon, in the Park Hyatt hotel, the door is open , no bugs, it's raining a gentle rain and no humidity in Colorado! That's wonderful but you know what makes it better? It's free!

We are on our free trip to CO, that my daughter won. It feels so good and is really what I needed!

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merrieeeeee, I hope you enjoy your time away. You deserve it!

From Facebook:

Randolph County Democratic Party

4 hrs

Clay Aiken with Jim Meredith and Blake Brennan at Democratic Headquarters in Asheboro today (photo courtesy of Tim Morgan).

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From Instagram:

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Back to Facebook:

Ebonie Pittman‎Magnolia 23 in Asheboro

Clay Aiken enjoyed lunch at Magnolia 23, today!

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courier-tribune.com

Aiken is Back in Randolph County in Full Campaign Mode

Aiken is back in Randolph County in full campaign mode

By J.D. Walker jdwalker@courier-tribune.com

July 17, 2014 - 6:39pm

ASHEBORO — Congressional District 2 candidate Clay Aiken is becoming a familiar face in Randolph County with another visit to Asheboro’s downtown area and the Randolph County Democratic Headquarters on Church Street Thursday.

Aiken is the Democratic challenger to incumbent Republican U.S. Rep. Renee Ellmers whom he will face in the Nov. 5 General Election. Aiken beat Asheboro businessman Keith Crisco, now deceased, for the Democratic slot in a narrow May 6 primary that resulted in a recount.

Aiken said in an interview Thursday that he is more comfortable now that the primary has passed. He said during the primary he always tried to be respectful of Crisco when he came to Crisco’s hometown. He said he felt Crisco took the same approach toward him when campaigning in Wake County.

Aiken said primaries have a way of pitting people against one another who don’t always have a difference of opinion on the issues – just different strategies on how to approach problems. Now that the primary is over, he is free to focus his attention on the differences he can offer voters over Ellmers.

Aiken said it is no secret that Ellmers is vulnerable. He said people tell him frequently that she has not been visible in her own district. Aiken said that should have been her main concern during the last four years she has been in office. Instead, he said, she has been focused on courting the Republican leadership in Washington for her own benefit.

“I don’t agree with (Rep.) Howard Coble on a lot of things, but he had the needs of his district in mind while he was in Washington,” he said. “With over 30 years in office, Howard could have been more involved with leadership. But he knew that his job was to work for his district. Why doesn’t Renee know that?”

Coble represented Randolph County in District 6 until after redistricting in 2000. At that time, district lines were redrawn, putting Randolph County in District 2. Some contend the lines were drawn to benefit Ellmers and others like her, to ensure she could be re-elected.

“That’s not right when either party does it,” Aiken said. “No district should be drawn safely. That’s not representative democracy.”

Aiken said he readily tells people he meets that he doesn’t have all the answers.

“But isn’t that part of the problem?” he said. “People get elected and go to Congress and they think they know everything. Then, they don’t budge.”

Elected officials have to be willing to work together, he said. That’s the way to address the issues he is hearing about on the campaign trail, he said.

People are still talking about jobs, but more and more, they are asking why this recovery is so much slower than past recoveries, Aiken said. He thinks part of the problem is that willful lack of cooperation.

“Each side has to stop blaming the other side,” he said. “People see that and they see it’s not working.”

Aiken said he is seeing an evolution in opinions on the Affordable Care Act (ACA), a key piece of President Barack Obama’s legacy that Ellmers has voted dozens of times to repeal. That is a waste of time, Aiken said. ACA is the law of the land. Lawmakers should deal with it.

Aiken said business owners get it. He said he talked to one business owner two months ago who demanded to know what he (Aiken) would do to repeal the measure. Aiken said he met the business owner again recently. This time, the man wanted to know what could be done to amend the law.

Aiken said he thinks the law could be modified to redefine what businesses fall into the small business category. Or, perhaps in the case of people who own multiple businesses, the law could be changed to allow the owner to count each employee population separately by business.

“I don’t know what the solution is,” he said. “But the bottom line is, if we don’t figure this out, he’s going to still be hurting.”

On immigration and the situation on the border involving thousands of immigrant children, Aiken said he thinks it is unfair for people to claim the DREAM Act is the reason why so many children are fleeing their home countries to come to the U.S. The Development, Relief, and Education for Alien Minors (DREAM) Act would give “conditional permanent residency to certain immigrants of good moral character who graduate from U.S. high schools, arrived in the United States as minors, and lived in the country continuously for at least five years prior to the bill’s enactment.”

It has never passed into law but has been the basis for Obama’s 2012 Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals (DACA) program.

Aiken said, first of all, the DREAM Act would not cover the children in this latest wave of immigration. Secondly, he said, the number of children flowing into South American countries and Mexico from the troubled areas are almost equal to the numbers coming to the U.S. Those countries don’t have a DREAM Act, Aiken said.

Aiken thinks the solution could be to get more funding to secure the borders. Then, the court systems need help in handling the flood of immigration cases. He said, right now, there are 245 judges handling 375,000 cases. They are currently scheduling cases into 2017.

As for the bigger issue of the 11 million illegal aliens in the country already, Aiken doesn’t believe the answer is to simply ship everyone back to their country of origin. The cost to do so would be staggering. He said one estimate he has heard hovers in the billions.

Plus, there are jobs in America that native-born citizens will not take, he said, especially in agriculture and some areas of manufacturing. Who would help farmers bring crops, he asked? Food prices would skyrocket, he said.

Another consideration frequently forgotten is the taxes illegal immigrants pay, including Social Security, sales taxes and property taxes.

“Deporting these people is not viable,” he said. “It would take billions out of the economy. I don’t have the solution, but we have to work on it together.”

As he talks with voters about these and other issues, Aiken said he is asking people two things. First, what has Ellmers done for you in the four years she has been in office? Then he asks voters to give him a chance.

“If, in 2016, I have not done any more for you than she has done in four years, vote me out,” he said.

Copyright ©Stephens Media LLC 2014. All rights reserved. • Privacy Policy

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Clay is so smart, and so familiar with the worlds within which he is running. It's fun to watch! He'll accomplish a great deal by hanging out in the places he's hanging out in and becoming known as a local guy. Not to mention that he speaks so well, and have I mentioned how good he's looking these days? :)

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47b94d1d48fc8488467966b16d4d3566_zps0d674319.jpg

Randolph Hospital ‏@randolphhosp · 4m

Congressional Candidate Clay Aiken stopped by yesterday for Q&A W/ hospital leadership abt challenges hospitals face http://ow.ly/i/6gW73

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Clay is so smart, and so familiar with the worlds within which he is running. It's fun to watch! He'll accomplish a great deal by hanging out in the places he's hanging out in and becoming known as a local guy. Not to mention that he speaks so well, and have I mentioned how good he's looking these days? :)

I think it's fun too, although I do feel for the people who either can't participate (due to geography) or those who would rather have him singing. I always really liked his singing, but I think the telling part for me was that the first clips I downloaded from his concerts wasn't the songs, but the banter. If I miss anything about this new foray, it's that this portion of Entertainer Clay has been hidden for a while.

Having said that, one of the things I always enjoyed about the banter was that it showed he was smart too. To be that quick with a wit, you have to be smart IMO. With this new venture, he's getting to show how smart he really is.

It's also very obvious to me that he loves his district and North Carolina, and he loves being "a man of the people." Of course I'm biased, but I truly believe him when he talks about trying to best represent the entire district, Democrat or Republican. I also think he'll be one who does plan regular trips home to see what people need and want from their representation in Washington.

On a shallow note...yep. Looking really good. Looking REALLY good. He has matured so well....

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From playbiller at the CH:

There will be a Clay Fundraiser in Red Bank NJ on August 15th

it will be at 6:30 PM with cocktails and food and Clay will indeed be there to talk to everyone.

If you are interested please contact barbara @ Flyingstarship.com or jbh725 @ aol.com <--- remove the spaces.

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New email...from Kathy Griffin. *dons Kevlar vest*

Ladies (and guys too), listen up!

Regardless of your party affiliation, do you really want a woman representing you who just days ago made the following statements in print.

Take a look at them, and here’s why: if there is one thing I am inarguably an expert on, it is being a working woman in a male-dominated field.

Republican Rep. Renee Ellmers’ comments below are why I encourage you to support Democratic nominee for Congress, Clay Aiken. You gotta read the stuff she said. I ain’t gonna lie, ladies, it’s pretty backwards.

"Men do tend to talk about things on a much higher level."

"The biggest need that women have is more time. We all want more time in our lives. More time in the morning to get ready."

"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."

If you want to read the entire article, click here.

Or, you can even listen to the audio here.

Contribute to Clay Aiken’s campaign today.

Kathy Griffin

From Facebook:

Magnolia 23 in Asheboro: We were glad to have Clay Aiken stop by and have lunch with us!

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Grabbed this from CV, from the fayobserver.com

Clay Aiken of Cary, the Democratic challenger to Republican U.S. Rep. Renee Ellmers of Dunn for the 2nd District seat, is scheduled to speak at Tuesday's 12:30 luncheon meeting of the Cumberland County Democratic Men's Club at Luigi's. Members pay $9 for lunch; nonmembers pay $18. Also, 2014 membership dues of $60 are due.

Also, there's a new fundraiser on Jul 30 that I'm adding to the Timeline.

Have a great week everyone!

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New email, this one about the Gold Circle Raffle:

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 SHARI SANCHEZ of Albuquerque, New Mexico. Shari, you are the recipient of a Clay for North Carolina T-shirt with the new campaign logo. I hope you enjoy!

CA4NC Gold Circle Weekly Raffle #4

This week’s raffle prize is a big one! It includes:

  • A song of your choice to be sung and recorded by Clay!!

The next raffle winner will be announced on Monday, July 28th.

Thank you again and good luck!

Ebonie Pittman

Clay Aiken For North Carolina

*crosses fingers*

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A tweet!

@ClayForNC: We’re excited to announce our CA4NC Social Fundraising program! Click here to learn more and get started: http://t.co/mnVlXmEMQu

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Via the CH:

Hollywood Actor, Quinton Aaron, Announces His 2014 Celebrity Golf Event

>PRWEB.COM NewswireAltanta, GA (PRWEB) July 21, 2014

Hollywood's favorite big man is putting his cleats on again, but this time he's getting on the grass in a pair of golf cleats. Actor Quinton Aaron, who is best known for starring in the Oscar nominated film The Blind Side, is gathering his celebrity friends to help raise money for his anti-bullying charity, The Quinton Aaron Foundation.

The festivities will begin in Atlanta, GA on August 14th at The Bobby Jones Golf Course, where Quinton will host his annual celebrity golf invitational. The following day is Quinton's thirtieth birthday and he will all be celebrating this milestone with celebrities and tournament attendees with an exclusive party in the clubhouse. Confirmed celebrities include fellow actor Jae Head, and expected guests Dikembe Mutombo, Clay Aiken, Alice in Chains, Donny Osmond, and many more.

http://www.digitaljournal.com/pr/2068331

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Tweet with pic

@paigerentz: .@ClayForNC talks about importance of being present locally at today's CumberlandCo Democratic Men's Club meeting. http://t.co/kryDvMY2pQ

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fayobserver.com

Clay Aiken says people 'hungry' for politicians to listen to them

Clay Aiken says people 'hungry' for politicians to listen to them

By Paige Rentz Staff writer | Posted: Tuesday, July 22, 2014 10:09 pm

For Clay Aiken, it's all about being there.

In a talk at Tuesday's meeting of the Cumberland County Democratic Men's Club, Aiken told local party members his campaign to unseat Rep. Renee Ellmers is about being present in the 2nd District and available to constituents.

"I'm in a different place every single day," he said. "We try to be in the district as much as we can be."

Aiken said after the meeting that he spends about two days a week out in the district's communities and has been to Fayetteville about a half-dozen times since the May 6 primary. Some nights, he said, he just drives to Siler City or Sanford for dinner to get to know the people and places of the 2nd District.

Aiken told local Democrats he was drawn into the race after the bad press North Carolina has received for its inefficient governance and the current gridlock at multiple levels of government.

"I jumped into the race in large part because I recognized I have a platform and a microphone, and I can speak to issues that matter to you all," Aiken said. "And I see that now as I go around the district. There are people who are tired of obstruction."

Aiken told of meeting a Sanford business owner who would have to provide his employees health insurance under the Affordable Care Act and wanted it repealed. He said they discussed the many provisions of the health reform, and parted still disagreeing about the law.

Aiken said a few months later he ran into the same man, who asked how the law can be tweaked since he now felt repeal is unlikely.

"He really understood at that point and pinpointed exactly what so many people ... all around the state and the country, and especially the 2nd District, are getting tired of: nothing getting done."

Aiken said he agreed with the man, telling him, "We have to sit down, and we've got to talk about how we're going to fix things."

Aiken said the 2nd District is one of the only districts in the state that has the potential to turn blue in November. He said a victory over Ellmers, a two-term Harnett County Republican, in the conservative-leaning district would send a message that politicians can't go to Washington, toe the party line and not work across the aisle.

"People in this state, in this area, in this district are hungry for someone to listen to them," Aiken said. "They want someone who's going to listen to people on the other side of the aisle. They want someone to be present."

Aiken noted after his talk that while he's a Democrat, he'll be accountable to all of his constituents.

"You can't sit at the end zones; you've got to be on the field," Aiken said. "You can't sit at the far right or the far left of the party and expect people to listen to you and embrace you as their representative if you don't embrace them back."

Staff writer Paige Rentz can be reached at rentzp@fayobserver.com or 486-2728.

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New email from Clay:

ldyj,

Much has been said about the remarks Renee Ellmers made recently at a conservative women’s panel. She said her words were taken out of context. I’m not going to judge whether or not that’s true. But I am going to point out one thing she said — and that’s her apparent desire to have an “open conversation.”

I’ve enjoyed traveling across the Second District these past few months. And many of the best and most engaging conversations I’ve had weren’t with folks who agreed with me on everything — they were with those who caused me to think about things in a different way or who challenged me to defend my own beliefs.

Voters in our district and around this country want to hear more about how folks in Washington are going to work together to solve our country’s problems. So far, they’ve gotten few — if any — answers from our representatives.

And that’s why I am officially challenging Renee Ellmers to a debate.

We owe it to the voters to speak openly about what we plan to do for the people of the Second District. Multiple organizations and news outlets have reached out to my campaign inviting us to debate Renee Ellmers. And we gladly accept the invitations. But upon followup, we’ve learned that Rep. Ellmers and her campaign have not accepted any of the requests.

Please click here to sign our petition urging Renee Ellmers to take me up on my call to debate.

Rep. Ellmers said she wanted the Republican Party to have an open conversation about how they frame their message when they talk to women. Well, that kind of conversation in spin and political messaging doesn’t appeal to me. I don’t want to be a messenger for the Republican Party. I don’t want to be a messenger for the Democratic Party. I DO want to be a messenger for the people of the Second District.

If Renee Ellmers wants to represent our district, I think she owes the folks back home the same “open conversation” she wants to have with her party. Please sign our petition if you agree.

Yours,

Clay

P.S. Help us spread the word by forwarding this email to 5 of your friends.

OOOOOO, SNAP! You go Clay!

This was also posted on his Facebook page!

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@ClayForNC: I'm ready for an open conversation w/ @RepReneeEllmers. Please RT if you think the voters of #NC02 deserve a debate: http://t.co/C2DskJGddz

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Hee Hee.

@ClayForNC: Thanks to @ABC11_WTVD for the debate invitation. I hope @RepReneeEllmers will take me up on my call to debate: http://t.co/C2DskJGddz

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@paigerentz: ICYMI this morning: @ClayForNC talks to CumberlandCo Dems abt the importance of being present in House2 communities. http://t.co/4PHw4q7zgy

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Via the CH:

Come hear our Congressional candidates Clay Aiken (2nd District), and Brenda Cleary (13th District) and meet other candidates running in Western Wake and countywide. Bring something to share (appetizers, salads, snacks, desserts). Plates, utensils, cups and drinks provided.

RSVP to westernwakedems@hotmail.com

WHEN

August 24, 2014 at 2:30pm - 5:30pm

WHERE

Cary Senior Center

120 Maury Odell Pl

Cary, NC 27513

United States

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thesnaponline.com

Aiken Campaigns in Asheboro

July 24, 2014

Aiken campaigns in Asheboro

By Larry Penkava, Editor of The Randolph Guide

CNHI

July 28, 2014 — Clay Aiken slipped into an Asheboro restaurant virtually unnoticed while campaigning in the city last Thursday.

The former American Idol runner-up who is running as a Democrat against Republican incumbent Renee Ellmers for the District 2 Congressional seat, took time before his food arrived to talk about his campaign and what he hopes to accomplish if elected.

"It's going well," Aiken said. "I've got an opponent who is tone deaf."

He then referred to an Ellmers quote from a recent panel discussion about how Republicans should reach out to women: "Men do tend to talk about things on a much higher level," and that male Republicans need to "bring it down to a woman's level."

"We've not done a good job reaching out in either party," Aiken said. "People are tired of politicians going to Washington" for personal reasons. "I'm going because I see a lot of people ignored — everybody in the Second District is ignored."

Aiken accused Ellmers of "doing what she feels necessary to get in the leadership. She's not in Randolph County, where people need access to her. The person in that seat needs to be present, attentive and available. I bet you wouldn't find many people in the district who have met her.

"I will be available for people to address their problems," said Aiken, "someone able to cut through red tape."

Aiken also blasted Ellmers for "not paying attention" when an omnibus bill in Congress included moving the 440th Airlift Wing at Pope Air Force Base to Arkansas. The move, he said, "would be devastating to the counties" surrounding Fort Bragg. "It's an irresponsible way to spend money. It should not have been in the bill."

He said that when Ellmers finally realized what was in the bill, she submitted a change, but it was too late to be included.

The day in Asheboro, Aiken said, included breakfast at Democratic headquarters and a tour of Randolph Hospital.

"I'm just trying to be around, talk to people on the streets, see what's important to them," he said. "I'll talk about anything."

He said he's been spending two days a week in the district with plans to increase it to four or more days as the November election nears.

Aiken had won the Democratic primary election against the late Keith Crisco of Asheboro, who died shortly afterward with intentions to concede, according to Crisco's manager. Aiken was asked to comment on Crisco.

"He was a shining example, unique to the old-school breed of public servants," said Aiken. By old-school, he said he meant politicians who worked "both sides of the aisle to improve people's lives. We don't have many like that anymore." He mentioned Terry Sanford, Jim Hunt and Howard Coble as examples of public servants.

"The way to improve lives is to work together," Aiken said. "Keith was in that category.

"People who have been in politics for years are frustrated ... that they can't get anything done," he said. "When I was growing up, that's how things were done. (President Bill) Clinton and (Speaker of the House Newt) Gingrich didn't get along but they worked together to balance the budget."

Aiken said he thinks people, including Republicans, are tired of Congress not doing anything. "You can't cater to (House Speaker) John Boehner and expect to get things done for Asheboro," he said. "Ellmers is not doing what she's supposed to be doing.

"The same goes for me," he said. "If in two years I'm not doing what I'm supposed to, get rid of me."

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Cool tweet.

@MattSonneborn: Gloria Steinem: "If Clay Aiken said women can't read pie charts, it might lose him the election. It should lose it for Renee Ellmers, too."

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Two cool articles. The first is where the tweet merrieeee brought over came from....

huffingtonpost.com (HuffPost Politics)

Deja Vu All Over Again: From Akin to Ellmers to Aiken

Déjà Vu All Over Again: From Akin to Ellmers to Aiken

by Jane Fonda

Posted: 07/24/2014 3:33 pm

n-RENEE-ELLMERS-large570.jpg

In 2012, then Senate candidate Todd Akin's statement that "legitimate rape" rarely causes pregnancy unleashed a storm of media controversy, and lost him the support of many in his party.

Flash forward to last week. North Carolina Congresswoman Renee Ellmers, who is running against Clay Aiken this November, urged the Republican Party, especially men in the party, to bring policy discussion "down to a woman's level."

"Men do tend to talk about things on a much higher level," Ellmers said. "Many of my male colleagues, when they go to the House floor, you know, they've got some pie chart or graph behind them and they're talking about trillions of dollars and, you know, how the debt is awful and, you know... 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."

Clearly, Ellmers hasn't been paying attention to the negative reactions other politicians have incurred when they trivialized rape and reinforced gender stereotypes? Is she so naïve to believe that just because she was talking at a Republican gathering the Internet wouldn't let the world in on her statements? Doesn't she know there are women astronauts now and cabinet members, that women run Fortune 500 companies, that, in fact, women are presidents in a number of countries... maybe our own before too long. Not that we don't have a long way to go before full equality.

Sure women and men are different. Recent brain science is showing just how different. Women tend to have more emotional, psychological and fluid intelligence, pay attention to details more, are more willing to ask for feedback, to hold authority in a more collaborative, less top-down manner, to go to the doctor when their health seems challenged... which may be one reason we live longer than men -- a kind of intelligence the world really needs, in fact.

It's not that women are better than men, it's just that we're not having to constantly prove our masculinity. What bothers me is that Ellmers equates gender difference with inferiority -- men speak on a "higher" level and women can only understand on a "lower" level. Feels like she's trying to prove her masculinity.

Now to Todd Akin. Sure, Ellmer's comments have sparked some controversy, but definitely not as much as if a man were to make the same comment. But are we supposed to give Ellmers a pass just because she's a woman? As my friend Gloria Steinem wisely put it, "If Clay Aiken said women can't read pie charts, it might lose him the election. It should lose it for Renee Ellmers, too."

Where does that leave Clay Aiken? Todd Akin showed that out of touch politicians are vulnerable. It's déjà vu with Ellmers. Clay Aiken should take note.

Follow Jane Fonda on Twitter: www.twitter.com/janefonda

Holy crap, Jane Fonda AND Gloria Steinem? Whoa.

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timesunion.com

Renee Ellmers vs. Clay Aiken

Renee Ellmers v. Clay Aiken

Posted on July 24, 2014 | By Roger Green

Earlier this month, reporter Ashe Schow of the Washington Examiner wrote “an article about the GOP’s poor messaging on the ‘war on women’ narrative. I posted some comments from Rep. Renee Ellmers, R-N.C., who said GOP men need to bring their messages ‘down to a woman’s level.’

“Ellmers called me a ‘liberal woman reporter’ and said I had taken her quote ‘completely out of context.’

“Below are her full comments from the event…, along with the audio of her segment. I have bolded the comments I used in my original post.” Having looked at the link, I feel Ellmers was treated fairly.

This story is still interesting to me because:

1) it IS the GOP war on women, being propagated by a woman

2) it is a classic “blame the press” ploy, which might work on a few, but not to anyone who bothered to read the transcript

Let me express my inherent bias here: all things being equal – and all things are NEVER equal, I’d be inclined to support a female candidate over a male candidate. In this case, though, if I were able to vote in the Congressional race for North Carolina’s Second District, I would support the male candidate.

That guy, BTW, is Clay Aiken, best known to me as the second-place contestant on an early season of American Idol; we even own one of his albums. You may have also seen him – I did not – on Celebrity Apprentice, where, I am told, he presented himself well.

Aiken had an odd row to the Democratic nomination. He had a tough primary fight with his opponent, 71-year-old Keith Crisco, back in May. Aiken won by a small margin, but Crisco had not yet conceded the race when Crisco suffered injuries from a fall at his home and died. Crisco associates say that he was about to concede the race to Aiken the next day.

It’ll be interesting to see what type of representative NC-2 wants, a two-term woman who appears to be over her head in Congress, or an openly gay man with a bit of entertainment fame. Last time out Ellmers won with 56% of the vote. As noted, my rooting interests are with the singer.

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