Robin Hayes, NC-08: The Impotence of One

Robin Hayes is learning a tough lesson in Washington. It stinks to belong to the party in power and yet, have none of your own. It must be lonely walking the halls of Congress knowing that you've been used and abused like an inflatable party doll. But that's not stopping Robin Hayes. Not at all.

As reported in The Charlotte Observer, on May 9th, Robin Hayes held a press conference at a gas station outside of his district in Charlotte, NC and filled his SUV with E85 while at the same time announcing he would introduce a bill to offer tax incentives for businesses that develop facilities to sell E85. Good for Robin.

Find out more below the fold...

Wasn't he lucky to find one of only seven facilities in the entire state that sells E85? He's even luckier to have a car that will run on the gas and ethanol blend. Most of us aren't that lucky. Even if we lived in a city with stations that sell E85, we probably wouldn't be able to run our cars on it. The good news is, he took a step for the environment.

The bad news is, he sold it as a step to help reduce the pinch that most consumers are feeling at the pump. He did admit that an added bonus will be reduced reliance on foreign oil and a healthier environment, but this is a new venture for Representative Hayes. He's never shown any interest in alternative fuels or the environment before, so we'll cut him some slack on believing that the consumer is going to save any money in the short term.

That's where playing nice ends, though. Robin Hayes has been in Congress for almost eight years and this is the first time he has introduced anything that has to do with energy independence, consumer savings or environmental protection. I decided to check on his stunt to make sure he actually introduced the bill. I'm sorry I doubted you Robin, because we find that baby here (PDF). It's so nice and clean. It's also likely to stay that way since it is probably the last time it will ever see action.

You see, Robin has a problem. It isn't something that's nice to talk about in polite company. Most people speak of it in hushed voices, however most folks living in the district have caught on by now. Robin Hayes is impotent. He's powerless to get anything accomplished in Washington. He's been reduced to stunts like the one at the gas station to make people think he's doing something. The truth of the matter is about the only thing he's been able to accomplish in Washington is to get some post offices renamed and to get two buildings named after Orville and Wilbur Wright. No, I'm not kidding.

Robin Hayes names buildings. Hayes has introduced a total of 42 bills or resolutions in the House and only four have gone on to become public law. Of the four bills he's introduced or sponsored in the past 8 years that have been signed into law, three of them have been to rename buildings after people. If you don't believe me you can look them up yourself at the Library of Congress. It's free and easy, just go here.

I know, I know, I should cut him some slack since he's a millionaire who's never really had to work to support his family. He inherited a family fortune and he doesn't understand what it takes to put food on the table when you're missing that silver spoon.

So, Robin Hayes whiles away the hours up in Washington coming up with names for buildings. Maybe I should consider it a stroke of good fortune for the district. Can you imagine the shape we would be in if the Republican leadership actually let Robin Hayes do anything important? They do have a job for him though and we know what it is.

He's a puppet, a lap dog, a rubber stamp for the Republican agenda in Congress. He has voted against the best interests of the people living in his district and he's done so more than a couple of times, all because the Republican leadership told him to. That rod in his back that holds him up straight? It doesn't belong to Robin Hayes. It's on loan from the party. Hayes is spineless and doesn't have the strength to stand up and do what is right for the people living in his district. That's why he voted for CAFTA, after promising he would vote against it.

Free trade agreements have devastated the 8th Congressional District and the damage continues with manufacturing plants closing and an entire way of life coming to an end. Robin Hayes knew all of this because another free trade agreement, NAFTA had started that ball rolling. Even with that knowledge, Hayes voted against the workers in the 8th District. He voted against the people who voted for him.

A week before the vote, Hayes stated that he was "flat-out, completely, horizontally opposed to CAFTA," arguing that CAFTA is an extension of NAFTA that was "not in the best interest of a core constituency I represent. Every time I drive through Kannapolis and I see those empty plants, I know there is no way I could vote for CAFTA." Hayes initially cast a "no" vote but then was persuaded by Republican House leaders to change his vote to a "yes" after the House Republican leadership kept the voting open 45 minutes past the time limit.

Unbelievably, this is the second time Hayes has switched his vote on a major piece of trade legislation. As constituents of North Carolina's 8th District know, in 2001, Hayes switched from initially casting a "no" vote to "yes," making him the deciding vote that gave President Bush Fast Track trade authority, a measure he had previously (and vehemently) opposed, which was the authority under which the CAFTA NAFTA expansion was negotiated.

"Even in cynical Washington political circles, no one can understand how Hayes would elect to irreversibly destroy his voters' trust in him by again betraying the clear will of his constituents, and the obvious threat CAFTA poses to them...." said Lori Wallach, director of Public Citizen's Global Trade Watch. "No one can imagine that he is so weak as to have been brow beaten into betraying his constituents again......"

Other than a few pockets of wealthy folks living in Concord and Charlotte, this district is made up of working class people. These are the people who are the real backbone of this country and that makes it all the more surprising they would chose someone spineless like Robin Hayes to stand up for them in Washington.

The voters in the 8th District are smart people, though and they are tiring of the empty promises they get from Robin Hayes. The man who said he was "flat-out, completely, horizontally opposed to CAFTA", turned his back on his people and voted for the trade bill. What did they get in return? They got some shiny new names on their post offices.

That isn't going to put food on their tables or E85 in their gas tanks.

Many voters in the 8th District have turned to their only clear choice, Larry Kissell. He's now a school teacher, but spent 27 years working in the textile industry. Larry would probably admit that he's one of the lucky ones. He was able to start a new career doing something he loves as he watched his job go to Mexico. Others in the district weren't as lucky.

It isn't surprising that Kissell has strong words for the most recent stunt pulled by Robin Hayes.

"Apparently Robin Hayes' hypocrisy knows no bounds. He is guilty of protecting the big oil companies. I'm not sure if that's a result of all the campaign money he's taken from them, or the massive amounts of stock he owns in oil companies. It's going to take more than a press conference to convince us that he truly supports alternative energy when we all know he's in the pocket of the oil companies," said Kissell.

Kissell pointed out the fact Hayes has voted against measures in the past that would have promoted an increase in efficiency standards and the research and development of alternative energy sources. These bills or amendments were sponsored by Democrats, so those of us savvy to Robin Hayes and his party puppet status know why he voted against these measures. The Republican leadership told him he had to. You see, they were more interested in sucking out the remaining fossil fuels from the earth and giving tax breaks to the already wealthy oil and gas industry giants.

If you haven't read about Larry Kissell before, please visit his web site and learn more about him. After you do, you'll agree there really is a clear choice. Voters in the 8th Congressional District will choose between Larry Kissell, a man who works hard, is honest and will stand up for the people in his district; and Robin Hayes, a Republican party puppet.

Robin Hayes by the numbers:

106th Congress (1999 - 2000) - Hayes introduced 10 bills or resolutions on the House floor. Only one was ever passed by both Houses of Congress and signed by the President. H.R. 4465 became law giving the name of J.L. Dawkins to a post office in Fayetteville, NC.

107th Congress (2001 - 2002) - Hayes introduced 8 bills or resolutions on the House floor. Only one was passed by both houses of Congress and signed by the President. H.R. 5590 became public law and civilian orders of protection are now enforced on military installations.

108th Congress (2003 - 2004) - Hayes introduced 12 bills or resolutions on the House floor and two were passed by both houses of Congress and signed by the President. H.R. 3118 became public law and designated naming of the Orville Wright Federal Building and the Wilbur Wright Federal Building in Washington, D.C. H.R. 4176 named a post office in Raeford, NC the Bobby Marshall Gentry Post Office Building.

109th Congress (2005 - 2006) - Hayes has introduced 12 bills or resolutions so far and none have been passed by the House, the Senate or signed into law by the President.

A note from SD - Don't just take my word for it. I've listed a summary of the bills he has sponsored below and I've linked to the Library of Congress where you can do your own research into his effectiveness in Washington. I'm not trying to hide any of the facts. I'll be happy to show anyone who doubts this information exactly where I'm getting it. I'll even admit Robin has tagged his name to bills as a co-sponsor that other Representatives have researched and sponsored, but I wanted to stay focused on those that were developed and researched by Hayes and his staff.



Excellent post

Thanks! I can't say I'm shocked about Hayes.

Thanks, Lance

I couldn't decide between snarky or serious for this post and obviously serious won out...:)

Vote Democratic! The ass you save may be your own.

Serious all the way.

This post is so good I could cry. Take your megaphone to the streets SD! Love it.

"I'm sure if you asked Rep. Hayes he's 'flat-out, completely, horizontally opposed' to torture, just like he was CAFTA. Too bad he voted for both."
-Larry Kissell for Congress

Thanks RANT!

I was considering a trip to MyDD with this. I don't know if it would get any attention at DKos without us having our crew lined up to recommend. On the other hand, it could stay up for days at MyDD and get the notice of some folks making decisions about the next netroots candidate.

Vote Democratic! The ass you save may be your own.

Now, I'm dying to know what that "x" is...

I think you may need to delete some pictures from old posts. I had to do that to get my newer pics to show up. I guess I had too many on the site.

Vote Democratic! The ass you save may be your own.

Excellent post, by the way.

There are some outstanding quotes in here. Hope the Kissell folks are going through it with a fine-tooth comb . . . and maybe there's even a poster in the future?

What if you were a US Congressman and the only thing you were good at was naming buildings?

Oh...this is good

Renaming them and blowing them up...Could do a poster with a pic of a post office and then the implosion of Pillowtex. I haven't heard from the campaign in days...just the press releases everyone else in the "media" gets. I hope this means they are very busy or taking a brief break before the ball starts rolling when school is out.

Vote Democratic! The ass you save may be your own.

Forgot to say, Thank you

I spent an entire day combing his congressional record. I couldn't find a detailed list for 2005, but I have every other year. It takes a lot of research to come up with just a few facts. It's worth it in the end.

Vote Democratic! The ass you save may be your own.

Taylor's a big PO boy, too

That's post office. He doesn't do much else. Maybe that's why the Asheville Citizen Times calls him effective. Naming POs = Less gubmint.
“All the world's a stage,
And all the men and women merely players.”
So enjoy the Drama.

I'm a blogwhore

what can I say.

I have to do what it takes to help the Kissell campaign get netroots fundraising and every little bit will help.

Please recommend at MyDD.

I don't think it will go anywhere at DKos, but we can get a lot of attention with it posted at MyDD.

Vote Democratic! The ass you save may be your own. I'll have to wait to see

his next FEC filings before I'll know how he paid. Also, couldn't figure out a way to work in the fact that his next fillup was probably all gas. There's only one station open to the public in Virginia and it's right off a navy base(?) in Arlington. Maybe he made it there, but in a Suburban I doubt it.

Nice symbolic gesture there, Hayes.

Vote Democratic! The ass you save may be your own. I'll have to wait to see! Nope!

Because Red State Robin will use the excuse that
Larry's Goat ate the credit card as the campaign
heats up. Remember that we are dealing with children in the
Republican congress and they know all of the excuses
for their failures and George's.

Yes, but it's for a good cause...

I'm not I sit here writing behind the safety of my computer screen :)

Vote Democratic! The ass you save may be your own.

Thank you Screwy

I really want to see that picture. You'll be the one standing up right on your own, right? hehehe

Vote Democratic! The ass you save may be your own.

and thats why....

as a Young Republican at UNC (yes I know I used to be shameful but it was the 90s), that we supported Richard Vinroot over Hayes in the gubenatorial primary. And of course Hayes won that and went on to lose horribly to Hunt. So NC-8 folks are stupid for even voting for him.

From Deep In The Heart Of Texas

From Deep In The Heart Of Texas

It's mind boggling, isn't it?

Now...I want them to vote for Kissell, so I won't call them stupid, but it does make you go hmmmmmmm.....

Vote Democratic! The ass you save may be your own.

We won't get fooled again!

As a voter in the 8th District, I'm sure that John Texas meant to say that anyone in the 8th District who voted for him is stupid. There's lots of us who didn't and never will vote for him.

The problem in the 8th District is that Democrats are the ones putting him in office. That's the group that needs to come to their senses.

"I am flat-out, completely, horizontally opposed to Robin Hayes"

You're right, it's the Dems

putting him over the top on the votes. We have to keep working to get the message out there.

Vote Democratic! The ass you save may be your own.


Yes just the 8th district voters :) But thats ok. We still have Democrats in Texas who think Gene Kelly is the dancer/actor and is still alive, so they keep voting for him. So much so it forced a run off for the US Senate seat in our primary. Fortunately our "The Dancer Is Dead" campaign kept him from winning. So as you can see, we have stupid voters too.

From Deep In The Heart Of Texas

From Deep In The Heart Of Texas