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Daniel Johnson - NC 10 Why am I covering this race?

I just got an email from an old friend in D.C. that told me that I should cover this race. I thank my friend for pointing me in the right direction.  This has been chosen as one of the races as an emerging race to watch. Daniel's website

I had the opportunity to speak with Johnson's campaign manager this afternoon. Daniel and his wife just became proud parents and we are extremely happy for them. She gave me a lot of insight into this district and Daniel. We also talked about how Patrick McHenry's (the incumbent) favorability ratings are low, well under 50%, which is very promising for this race.

After having worked on my Better Senators for Veterans Act Blue page for the past month I had been procrastinating looking for some House Races to cover. I could not ask for a better blessing to arrive. (read on)

A little about Daniel

Daniel Johnson is a Veteran of the United States Navy. He lost both of his legs below the knee as a result of an accident in which he saved the life of a crewmate on the U.S.S. Blue Ridge in 1999.

Daniel worked for Max Cleland on the Hill and then went to law school at UNC. He served as a Prosecutor in the DA's office and now he is in Private Practice.

I explained that this is the kind of candidate that I'm really looking to promote. After having worked on my Better Senators for Veterans Act Blue page for the past month I had been procrastinating looking for some House Races to cover. I could not ask for a better blessing to arrive. (read on)

Who is Patrick McHenry the Incumbent?

McHenry took over this seat when Cass Ballenger, nine-term popular incumbent retired. He won a runoff against the Catawba County Sherriff by the smallest of margins.

The incumbent Patrick McHenry was embroiled in a controversy earlier when he put up a link on his website giving away confidential security information and put troops in danger. Vet Voice has a good diary on that controversy including pointing out  how McHenry was hypocritical on the issue of leaking information.

click here to read

On that same trip McHenry called a guard protecting him a "two bit security guard" because he wouldn't let him work out. Full remarks.

McHenry had a challenger in the Republican Primary and only garnered 67% of the total vote against a Veteran and former JAG Officer.

The Matchup

These two guys are the same age (32) and that is where the similarities seem to end. McHenry has never served and has been a political operative much of his adult life working for Bush on his presidential campaign and of all people Rick Lazio. He's currently the youngest member of Congress if I'm not mistaken. Daniel Johnson has chosen a life of public service based on helping people.

This is a very conservative district traditionaly. However, like most places in the country and especially in this largely rural district people are feeling the pain at the pump. This district needs better high paying jobs and it's obvious. This is an area that has been known for manufacturing for years and I'm sure many of these jobs have left.

It is my understanding only 9% of this district is African-American. This is not uncommon for the rural part of the country.  This district is West of Charlotte and East of Ashville. Hickory is the largest city.  

However, I've been assured that Obama should boost the excitement amongst young voters and those that have not been engaged in the process.
The Clinton voters, I'm also convinced will stay in the party on this one. I think the fact that Obama announcing that North Carolina will be targeted only helps.

Fundraising

McHenry holds a just under 2 to 1 margin in cash on hand based on looking at Open Secrets. However, I explained I am not concerned about those numbers as we are just looking for good candidates. I feel confident that this campaign will raise competitive money and was told Max Cleland would be coming to help campaign.

Furthermore more than half of McHenry's money comes from PAC's and not the people.

Outlook

This campaign seems to be in the right place. Johnson would be a welcome change and I thank his campaign for getting back to us so quickly and look forward to talking with him as the campaign progresses. Daniel's campaign manager was extremely knowledgeable about the district and the issues. I appreciate her generously taking her time to  speak with me considering I had just heard of Daniel Johnson through my friend.  Having worked with many campaigns and candidates, I am well aware you can tell a lot about a Candidate by how a Campaign Staff treats people.

We have officially endorsed Daniel Johnson as our next Progressive Electorate Candidate. Please donate to his campaign at Act Blue

or click on the thermometer

Goal Thermometer

Originally posted to alpolitics on Wed Jun 25, 2008 at 09:02 PM PDT.

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