The North Carolina Senate race between Democrat incumbent Kay Hagan and Republican challenger Thom Tillis has been interesting to watch. Hagan’s lead is gone, perhaps in part due to the revelation that she and her family are “stimulus” profiteers, siphoning handsome amounts of money for themselves from President Obama’s epic waste of taxpayer billions in 2009, which Hagan voted in favor of.
The Obama stimulus was a heist, pure and simple – taxpayer money passed out to cronies and tucked into Democrat slush funds, resulting in no detectable “job creation” at all. That’s why Team Obama was reduced to the laughable tactic of inventing a new metric called “jobs created or saved,” in which everyone in America who managed to keep their job was supposed to credit the stimulus. The punch line is that a lot of people bought it.
The stimulus story just keeps getting worse for Hagan. The latest revelations, from Carolina Journal Online:
JDC Manufacturing, a company co-owned by Democratic U.S. Sen. Kay Hagan’s husband Charles “Chip” Hagan, lowered the total cost of a 2010 stimulus-funded energy project but kept all of the savings, sending none back to taxpayers who had funded the stimulus grant.
The company’s original application stated the total project would cost $438,627, and said JDC would contribute “leveraged funds” amounting to $187,983, or 43 percent of the total. As the project reached completion, however, JDC revised the total budget downward by $114,519 and applied all the savings to its share, keeping all the taxpayer funding.
Also, JDC’s decision to hire Solardyne/Green State Power, a separate company co-owned by Chip Hagan and the Hagans’ son Tilden, to install a portion of the stimulus-funded energy project at the JDC building appears to violate a conflict-of-interest provision that was included as part of the original application for the stimulus grant.
Wow. So we’ve got Hagan voting for the stimulus bill; her husband grabs a $250k “green energy” grant to pay one company owned by the Hagan family to install new light and heat systems in another company owned by the Hagan family; they end up cutting their investment in the project by $114,519… but they keep all the “stimulus” money anyway. Adding insult to injury, the whole arrangement was a fairly clear violation of Hagan Company Number One’s conflict-of-interest policy, a copy of which was thoughtfully included with their application for stimulus funds.
You’d think something like this would finish Hagan off, but perhaps her supporters have grown accustomed to being fleeced by their rulers. If it’s not at least a million dollars, it’s not worth worrying about. (And if it’s over a billion dollars, it’s too big to comprehend.)
Some say Hagan has been outperforming pundit expectations by running a “populist” campaign. What’s populist about this little stimulus deal? Even if it’s not the rankest form of corruption from the top down – i.e. Senator Hagan voting for the stimulus bill with an eye towards cutting herself a slice of the proceeds – it’s still a decidedly non-populist example of how Ruling Class political connections create a very different economic environment for the plugged-in. If there’s one thing America needs a lot less of, fast, it’s politicians grabbing our money and handing it out to their special friends, or investing it along ideological lines. (I don’t want to see any of that out of Republicans, either. Seriously, knock it off, all of you.)
The National Republican Senatorial Committee is pouring more advertising money into the race, a show of confidence in Tillis (or at least confidence that Hagan remains vulnerable) doubtless buoyed by the ongoing stimulus saga, and the discovery that the Libertarian spoiler candidate in the race is an outright lunatic. Jim Geraghty at National Review transcribes the deep thoughts of Sean Haugh on how fighting ISIS is just like Ferguson, so we should think about hugging our differences with the Islamic State out:
“Somebody has got to look you dead in the eye and remind you that killing people is wrong. And I guess that somebody has got to be me… If you want an excuse to keep on killing, you’ve come to the wrong guy. Killing people is wrong, period. Somebody has got to be smart enough to see the results and realize that we’ve got to try another way. Somebody has got to be moral enough to be the first to stop the killing. And it’s got to be us….
“The people you see on the news are not abstract concepts. Those dead bodies are real. Real human beings who have been murdered to advance some government policy of ours, whether it’s in Mosul, or Gaza, or Ferguson, or Nogales.
“It’s long past time we tried different, peaceful solutions. I’m Sean Haugh, and I am not at war.”
Haugh’s pulling enough votes to give Hagan a three-point lead, while Tillis is thought to be ahead by a point if he drops out. He picked an interesting moment to implode… assuming his supporters retain sufficient reasoning capacity to see the glaring flaws in his ISIS strategy, such as their absolute lack of interest in pursuing “different, peaceful solutions” or putting a stop to the killing.