*** RTP EXCLUSIVE***
Duo pressured the NRA to change score for their hand-picked candidate in GOP primary.
Haynes violates state party by-laws. Again.
Highly reliable RTP sources say that in the last few days, GOP state chairman Ryan Haynes joined Speaker Beth Harwell on a frantic phone call to National Rifle Association staff demanding the organization change the rating the NRA gave to Rick Tillis, who is running against Mike Waggoner in District 92 to fill the seat vacated by the retirement of Rep. Billy Spivey.
Seems that Tillis originally received a “C” rating from the NRA, while Waggoner scored an “A.”
In the rural district they seek to represent, a bad rating by the NRA could easily decide the election in the GOP primary. And Tillis’ “C” rating was one, possibly the lowest, of any Republican in the state running in a primary in August. The poor rating was the result of his answers to a questionnaire both candidates filled out and signed.
Tillis, who was being actively recruited to run by Harwell even before Spivey had decided to retire, provided equivocating answers that gave him a score in the range normally given to Memphis Democrats.
Don’t believe us? Check it out. The screen shot on the left is from the NRA’s website on Thursday. The screenshot on the right is from today (Sunday). It’s not of the best quality, but then, neither is the Leadership:
Of course, the fact that Harwell is personal friends with Tillis’ brother, former No. Carolina speaker and now U.S. Senator Thom Tillis surely didn’t have anything to do with the grade change. Naw, that couldn’t possibly be the reason.
As for Haynes, the state GOP’s “Taylor-gate” scandal (which is still going on) didn’t even slow him down. He just blew through the party by-laws that prevent him from taking sides in a primary with nary a glance — just like he did when he hired the wife of the state party political director, who then proceeded to sign up clients trying to defeat incumbent Republicans. “Rules are for the little people,” says
As for the NRA, they were between a rock and a hard place. The Speaker could block most any legislation they bring during the next session, unless they buckle under. Wayne LaPierre will not be amused by all this.
RTP asks this question: Just how corrupt and slimy do these two need to be before someone finally demands they leave or be fired?
Maybe we should get the Attorney General to investigate them. Yeah – that’ll work.