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Even the safe congressmen keep raising money

Here is what some North Carolina congressman representing safe politically districts had raised this year, according to the latest reports filed by the Federal Election Commission.

Democrat G.K. Butterfield of the 1st district had raised $168,826,826 and had $211,416 on hand. Republican Virginia Foxx of the 5th district had raised $207,065 and had $1.3 million on hand; 6th district Republican Howard Coble has raised $89,552 and had $171,051 on hand.

Republican Sue Myrick of the 9th district raised $193,594 and had $193,934 on hand. Republican Patrick McHenry of the 10th district raised $300,603 and had $127,916 on hand. Democrat Mel Watt of the 12th district raised $141,765 and had $187,970 on hand. Republican Walter of the 3rd district had raised $135,279 and had $127,699 on hand.

Spending bill makes for strange bedfellows

North Carolina’s liberal Mel Watt, conservative Walter Jones and Blue Dog Mike McIntyre all voted "no" on a stopgap spending bill that would keep the federal government running until April 8.

The rest of the state’s U.S. House contingent voted yes. The bill passed 271-158 and now goes to the Senate.

Watt most liberal, McHenry among most conservative House members

An annual list of how members of Congress stack up, ideologically speaking, has U.S. Rep. Mel Watt as the most liberal member of the state's House delegation while U.S. Rep. Patrick McHenry is the most conservative.

National Journal studied 97 roll-call votes that it used to establish where House members ranked in terms of how liberal or conservative they were.

Watt, a Charlotte Democrat, was among eight House members who were tied for the most liberal in the chamber. Watt was the 423rd most conservative House member.

McHenry, a Cherryville Republican, was the 17th most conservative member of the chamber and the 413th most liberal. Virginia Foxx, a Banner Elk Republican, was the 19th most conservative member and the 411th most liberal. 

No other members of the state's delegation cracked the top 20 as either conservative or liberal.

Foxx is the richest

U.S. Rep. Virginia Foxx is the richest member of the state's U.S. House delegation.

Foxx, a Banner Elk Republican, has a minimum net worth of $2.4 million, according to an analysis of disclosure forms by the Capitol Hill newspaper Roll Call.

U.S. Rep. Heath Shuler, a Waynesville Democrat is the second richest with $2.3 million in assets. U.S. Rep. Larry Kissell, a Biscoe Democrat, has a negative net worth of $2,000. Numbers reflect a minimum because members of Congress report a range of net worth.

Foxx: $2.4 million

Shuler: $2.3 million

Howard Coble, a Greensboro Republican: $945,000

David Price, a Chapel Hill Democrat: $896,000

G.K. Butterfield, a Wilson Democrat: $786,000

Bob Etheridge, a Lillington Democrat: $418,000

Mel Watt, a Charlotte Democrat: $330,000

Patrick McHenry, a Cherryville Republican: $217,000

Sue Myrick, a Charlotte Republican: $167,000

Walter Jones, a Farmville Republican: $125,000

Brad Miller, a Raleigh Democrat: $65,000

Mike McIntyre, a Lumberton Democrat: $18,000

Kissell: -$2,000

Hat tip: RTB

Update: Post now clarifies that the Roll Call analysis looked at members of the U.S. House and did not include the Senate. 

Campaign cash: Congress

Here's a summary of what members of Congress had in their campaign accounts through September 2009. The remaining members of the state's delegation will be added to the list.

G.K. Butterfield: $231,000.

Howard Coble: $525,000.

Bob Etheridge: $1 million.

Virginia Foxx: $1.1 million.

Walter Jones: $127,766.

Larry Kissell: $244,000. Businessman Lou Huddleston has raised $57,641 from individuals and loaned himself $45,125. Tim D'Annunzio, who owns a skydiving business, has loaned himself $303,000 and raised $8,400. Hamlet resident Darrell Day has raised $30 and loaned himself $3,000. Republican Thomas Sweeney has not reported raising any money.

Patrick McHenry: $158,000. Iredell County Commissioner Scott Keadle has loaned himself $250,000 to challenge McHenry for the Republican nomination.

Mike McIntyre: $824,917. Republican Will Breazeale has received $3,800 in individual contributions and has $400 in his campaign account.

Brad Miller: $148,000. Challenger William Randall II has not reported raising any money.

Sue Myrick: $236,305.

David Price: $218,000. Republican challenger Frank Roche has raised $10,879, mostly through individual contributions. Republican George Hutchins has loaned himself $5,000.

Heath Shuler: $1.1 million.

Mel Watt: $140,000.

Five. Five Congressmen on TV.

North Carolina Public Television is planning a call-in show on health care that will be brought to you by the letters "D" and "R."

UNC-TV intends to air the live show 9 p.m. Tuesday. All members of the state's congressional delegation have been invited. So far, Democratic Reps. David Price, Bob Etheridge, Brad Miller and Mel Watt have accepted, according to a UNC-TV spokesman. Sen. Richard Burr, a Republican confirmed his participation Thursday afternoon.

Sen. Kay Hagan (D), and Reps. G.K. Butterfield (D), Howard Coble (R), Virginia Foxx (R), Walter Jones (R), Sue Myrick (R), Mike McIntyre (D) and Heath Shuler (D) have declined the recently issued invitations.

Reps. Larry Kissell (D) and Patrick McHenry (R) have not yet responded.

Perhaps UNC-TV should sweeten the pot with a few tote bags and mugs.

Update: Post includes updated list of who has decided to participate. 

Shuler, Foxx in lead in money race

If money is the mother’s milk of politics, then Congressmen Health Shuler, a Democrat, and Virginia Foxx, a Republican, are the two members of the Tar Heel delegation who are well provisioned at the moment.

Both have over $1 million in their campaign war chests as of June 30, according to campaign reports filed with the Federal Elections Commission, Rob Christensen reports.

Shuler, a Bryson City Democrat whose name had been bandied about at one time as a potential U.S. Senate candidate, had $1.1 million in his campaign committee. Foxx, a Republican from Banner Elk had $1,006,121.

The middle weights in campaign war chests were Democrat Bob Etheridge of Lillington ($895,137), Democrat Mike McIntyre of Lumberton ($696,540), Republican Howard Coble of Greensboro ($505,759), Democrat David Price of Chapel Hill ($271,619), Democrat G.K. Butterfield ($225,204), Democrat Larry Kissell of Bisco ($214,051) and Republican Sue Myrick of Charlotte ($160,751).

The light wallet crowd included Democrat Mel Watt of Charlotte ($123,767) Republican Patrick McHenry of Cherryville ($119,270), Republican Walter Jones of Farmville ($85,424) and Democrat Brad Miller of Raleigh ($70,654).

As far as fundraising during the past three months, the big three are Etheridge ($326,561), Kissell ($322,631) and Shuler ($314,753).

U.S. House passes lending bill

The U.S. House of Representatives has passed the anti-predatory lending bill by U.S. Reps. Mel Watt of Charlotte and Brad Miller of Raleigh.

The bill, HR 1728 would tighten regulations and require lenders to have proof that borrowers could actually repay their mortgages, Barb Barrett reports. The bill would also require that refinanced mortgages show an actual financial benefit to borrowers.

The legislation is aimed to prevent the surge of shady lending that took place in the runup to the current housing crisis.

The vote in the House on Thursday was 300-114.

In North Carolina, the state’s Democrats were joined in “yes” votes by Republican Rep. Walter Jones.

Republicans Howard Coble, Virginia Foxx, Patrick McHenry and Sue Myrick voted no.

The bill passed the House last Congress as well, but never got anywhere in the Senate. This year, it again goes to the Senate with an uncertain future, as there is no companion legislation.

But U.S. Rep. Barney Frank, chairman of the House financial services committee, told reporters he believes Democrats’ stronger majority in the Senate this year will give them the thrust to push the bill through.

N.C. received $216m in earmarks in '08

How much did North Carolina's delegation get in earmarks last year?

Here is a breakdown of the approved earmarks in last year's spending bills, as compiled by Citizens Against Government Waste:

Sen. Elizabeth Dole: 110, $133.6 million

Sen. Richard Burr: 89, $117.1 million

Rep. David Price: 51, $56.8 million

Rep. Robin Hayes: 44, $48.6 million

Rep. Bob Etheridge: 29, $38.3 million

Rep. Mike McIntyre: 31, $37.9 million

Rep. Heath Shuler: 30, $28.8 million

Rep. Mel Watt: 28, $28.5 million

Rep. Sue Myrick: 13, $20.9 million

Rep. Walter Jones: 12, $20.3 million

Rep. Howard Coble: 15, $17.2 million 

Rep. Patrick McHenry: 10, $16.8 million

Rep. G.K. Butterfield: 17, $14.4 million

Rep. Brad Miller: 14, $12.7 million

Rep. Virginia Foxx: 10, $12.4 million

In all, the delegation received 219 earmarks worth a total of $216.4 million.

Correction: An earlier version of this post misstated Jones' earmark total.

U.S. Reps. have $4.3m war chest

North Carolina's U.S. representatives have $4.3 million in cash on hand.

Campaign finance reports filed with the Federal Election Commission show most of the dozen House members with decent war chests at the end of the first quarter of 2009.

Democratic Rep. Heath Shuler of Waynesville was doing the best, with $1.1 million leftover after his recent election to a second term in Congress. Republican Rep. Virginia Foxx of Banner Elk was a close second, with around $942,000.

In general, the state's Democrats were doing better than the Republicans. Democratic Reps. Bob Etheridge of Lillington and Mike McIntyre of Lumberton had more than a half-million dollars, and Rep. David Price of Chapel Hill more than a quarter-million.

Meantime, Republican Reps. Sue Myrick of Charlotte and Patrick McHenry of Cherryville had less than $100,000, and Rep. Walter Jones had just $9,170.

Democratic Rep. Brad Miller of Raleigh had only $37,310.  

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