13 Days: Dole Spent 13 Days in NC in 2006, Campaigns for the GOP

DAY 13

Thirteen days until this year’s landmark election. Doesn’t seem like such a long time, does it? Consider this – in 2006, Elizabeth Dole spent just 13 days in North Carolina. She chose politics over people as the head of the NRSC that year and nixed trips to her “home state” in favor of trips to Minnesota, Montana, Washington, Tennessee – the list sounds like a geography text book. But North Carolina is conspicuously missing. Hardworking families in North Carolina were left in the dust of Elizabeth Dole’s partisanship and absenteeism and told to swallow the line that Dole’s politicking was helping their “best interests.” She must be out of touch if she thinks voters will believe that this year.


Dole Spent 13 Days In North Carolina In 2006. In 2006, while Dole was chair of the National Republican Senatorial Committee, she spent only 13 days in North Carolina. [Media General, 9/26/08]


February: Dole Raised Money In California. In early March 2006, Roll Call reported, “National Republican Senatorial Committee Chairwoman Elizabeth Dole (N.C.) was also in California last week trolling for dollars at several NRSC events.” [Roll Call, 3/2/06]

March 11: Dole Expected To Campaign For Mark Kennedy In St. Paul, Minnesota. In March 2006, The Hotline reported, “NRSC chair Elizabeth Dole (R-NC) will be joining Rep. Mark Kennedy (R-06) at his annual St. Patrick’s Day Fundraiser 3/11 in Saint Paul. Dole: ‘I am coming to Minnesota this Saturday because helping Mark win is at the top of my priority list.” [The Hotline, 3/8/06]

April 13: Dole Campaigned In Montana For Senator Burns, Said There Was Nowhere She Would Rather Be. During an April 2006 Congressional recess, Dole traveled to Billings, Montana to campaign for Senator Conrad Burns. During the luncheon, Dole stated, “There’s nowhere I’d rather be today.” Burns took more money from lobbyist Jack Abramoff and his associates than any other member of Congress and around the date of the luncheon, Burns was named to Time magazine’s list of the nation’s five worst senators. Time said Burns was ethically questionable and ineffective, though Dole called him a “great senator” and a man of integrity. [Greensboro News & Record editorial, 4/27/06; Raleigh News & Observer, 4/23/06; Bulletin Frontrunner/Billings Gazette, 4/14/06; Associated Press, 4/14/06]

Dole Spent 24 Hours In Montana. According to the Raleigh News & Observer, “Dole flew on a corporate jet…to Billings, Montana’s largest city with a population of 100,000…She was there 24 hours working for Burns, whom she calls an ‘old friend.’ She spoke at a $250-a-plate buffet luncheon before more than 100 guests, her smile a near-constant, her Piedmont drawl mixing with the western twang of those in the audience. She toured a pair of health clinics. She did live interviews on television and spent an hour on a radio show usually devoted to agricultural news. At the campaign rally, she ignored the dozen protesters outside.” [Raleigh News & Observer, 4/23/06]

Dole Campaigned In Five States During 2006 August Recess. As the chair of the NRSC in 2006, Dole campaigned and held fundraisers for Republican senatorial candidates in five states during the August recess. She campaigned in Washington, Tennessee, Michigan, Montana, and Pennsylvania. [Charlotte Observer, 9/11/06

Dole Spent Beginning Of August Recess In North Carolina. The Raleigh News & Observer’s Under the Dome blog reported that Dole visited more than a dozen communities in Western North Carolina during the first part of the August recess. [Raleigh News & Observer, Under the Dome blog, 8/7/06; Hotline, 8/29/06]

August 23: Dole Campaigned In Montana For Republican Senate Candidate Conrad Burns. [Vancouver Columbian, 8/26/06]

August 25 – 27: Dole Campaigned In Washington State For Republican Senate Candidate Mike McGavick. [Winston-Salem Journal, 8/29/06]

August 28: Dole Campaigned In Tennessee For Republican Senate Candidate Bob Corker. [Frontrunner, 8/29/06]

August 29: Dole Campaigned In Michigan For Republican Senate Candidate Michael Bouchard. [Frontrunner, 8/29/06; Hotline, 8/29/06]

August 31: Dole Campaigned In Philadelphia For Republican Senate Candidate Rick Santorum. [Pittsburgh Post-Gazette, 9/1/06]

October 18: Dole Held Missouri Fundraiser For Republican Senator. On October 18, Dole held a breakfast fundraiser targeted towards women in Clayton, Missouri for Republican Senator Jim Talent. [Frontrunner, 10/26/06; St. Louis Post-Dispatch, 10/19/06]

October 31: Dole Campaigned For George Allen In Virginia In October. According to the Hotline, Dole said that she had just returned from campaigning on behalf of George Allen in Virginia on November 3, 2006. The Associated Press reported that Dole campaign with Allen on October 31st. [The Hotline, 11/3/06; Associated Press, 11/1/06]


Dole Campaign In A Dozen States, Said NRSC Job Helped North Carolina. According to Brian Nick, a spokesman for the NRSC, Dole campaign in a dozen states as the chair of the NRSC. The Associated Press reported that Dole “spent her days in the Senate, and her nights on the telephone to contributors.” Dole said that her job as NRSC chair helped North Carolina because “it builds relationships…that helps you in the future.” [Associated Press, 11/8/06]

Dole Said She Was “Doing Everything Possible To Make Sure I’m In The State As Much As Possible” But Rarely Had Public Appearances. According to the Raleigh News & Observer, Dole insisted she was taking care of North Carolina despite the demands of her position as head of the National Republican Senatorial Committee. She said, “I’m doing everything possible to make sure I’m in the state as much as possible.” A Greensboro News & Record editorial noted, “During the two-week Easter break [in 2006], she managed a single public appearance in Winston-Salem,” and had no other public events in North Carolina. [Raleigh News & Observer, 4/23/06; Greensboro News & Record editorial 4/27/06]

Dole Admitted Heading The NRSC Kept Her Away From North Carolina. Dole admitted to the Winston Salem Journal that heading the NRSC “kept her away from North Carolina more than she would like, but said it was benefiting North Carolina because she gains attention for the state’s issues at weekly leadership meetings.” The Wilmington Star News reported that Dole’s duties as the chair of the NRSC kept her “away from North Carolina” and “on the road in places such as New Jersey, Missouri, and Ohio.” The report noted that Dole “spends her days raising money, tracking polls and making decisions about where to spend the committee's money.” Dole visited the three states in order to raise money for Republican Senate candidates. [Wilmington Star News, 10/30/06; Charlotte Observer, 10/26/06; Raleigh News & Observer, 10/20/06; Winston-Salem Journal, 12/12/05]

NRSC Job Kept Dole In Washington. According to a report by the Raleigh News & Observer in October 2006, “Dole has spent much of time in Washington, raising money and figuring out where to send millions of dollars to maintain Republican control of the Senate.” The report noted, for example, that Dole welcomed President Bush to an NRSC fundraising luncheon at the “posh Mayflower Washington hotel” in late October 2006. [Raleigh News & Observer, 10/20/06]

Rosemary Roberts: Dole Campaigned For Republicans All Over The Country, North Carolinians Noticed Her Absence. Rosemary Roberts of the Greensboro News & Record wrote, “Dole began darting all over the country campaigning and raising money for GOP senatorial candidates. Many North Carolinians noticed that she spent little time in our state but lots of time in other states.” The editorial also noted that after the 2006 election, North Carolinians “can also expect to see her face more frequently in North Carolina.” [Greensboro News & Record, 11/10/06]

Rob Christensen: Due To NRSC Job, Dole Has “Rarely Been Seen In North Carolina The Past Two Years.”
The Raleigh News & Observer’s Rob Christensen wrote that taking the job of NRSC chair “tarnished Dole's image in Washington and meant that she has rarely been seen in North Carolina the past two years.” [Raleigh News & Observer, 11/12/06]

Greensboro News & Record Editorial: “It’s Not Unusual For Dole…To Travel Far From Home.” In April 2006, the Greensboro News & Record published an editorial titled, “Dole’s national agenda creates potential for trouble at home.” The editorial stated, “It’s not unusual for Dole, the senator from North Carolina, to travel far from home, thanks to her national political agenda. For residents who grew frustrated by former Sen. John Edwards’ frequent trips to somewhere else, it’s almost deja vu all over again… The tough campaigns will force Dole to work harder on behalf of GOP candidates and maybe cost her time in North Carolina.” [Greensboro News & Record editorial, 4/27/06]

Dole Had Visited More Than Six Other States By April 2006. According to an article published in the Raleigh News & Observer in April 2006, Dole had already “visited more than half a dozen states [as head of the National Republican Senatorial Committee], focusing on the tight races, and she will travel more as November nears. [Raleigh News & Observer, 4/23/06]

North Carolina Republican Party Chief Of Staff Defended Dole’s Absences.
Bill Peaslee, chief of staff for the North Carolina Republican Party, said he believed that Dole was helping North Carolina by working to keep the Senate in Republican hands. He stated, “Elizabeth Dole doesn’t have to be in North Carolina to be serving North Carolina’s interests.” [Raleigh News & Observer, 4/23/06]

Dole: “Campaigns, They Are Not Run In Washington And They Are Not Won In Washington.” Despite her rare appearances in her home state, in January 2006, Dole said Senate contests would be decided on a state-by-state basis. She added, “Campaigns, they are not run in Washington and they are not won in Washington…I don’t see this at all as a nationalized campaign.” [Environment and Energy Daily, 1/24/06]

---Disclosure: I am Kay Hagan's Online Communications Director---