Saturday, April 9, 2011

Pantano to host Town Hall Meeting on Nuclear Power and the Brunswick Plant

Verne Strickland Blogmaster

“Nuclear power’s impact on our community and the country: 
The facts and myths.”
Ilario Pantano, candidate for US Congress, supports an “all of the above” energy policy approach that includes nuclear power and is increasingly reliant on domestic energy production. 

However Pantano’s support does not come at the expense of accountability and transparency.  As a father, husband and local Wilmington resident, Pantano feels that it is time for some straight talk on the future of the nuclear industry and of the plant right here in Brunswick County that has been operating for over 35 years. Guests from Brunswick, New Hanover and Pender counties are all invited to participate in this town hall discussion.

Pantano issued the following statement:

“As concerns about the radiological hazards of the Japan tragedy continue to grow, our goal is to have an honest conversation about the benefits and the risks of nuclear power and fuel storage. We will bring the focus close to home with a look at the Brunswick Nuclear facility, its operating practices and safety procedures. Our hope is that experts from both Progress Energy and GE Hitachi will choose to be on hand to speak to the public and answer questions about the issues both here and in Japan.  We are grateful to the brave technicians from our GE community that have gone overseas to help and we hope they will share some insights.  This event should mark the beginning of an ongoing knowledge share with the nuclear community and the public.”
Who is invited (confirmed speakers will be announced prior to event):

1) The Public -  Come learn, share and discuss the issues
2) Regional Elected Officials - Hear from the experts and your constituents
3) Public Safety Officials - Outline safety procedures and evacuation plans
3) Industry leaders and experts from Progress Energy, GE, and more

What:  Town hall meeting on the Brunswick Nuclear plant
When:   Thursday, April 14, 2010 at 12:00PM
Where:   North East Regional Library, 1241 Military Cutoff Road
               David M. Paynter Assembly Room

For speaking opportunities or press inquiries contact

Friday, April 8, 2011

Adopting pets can be complicated if you're conservative, Christian, Republican, and moved to the South.


Posted: Apr 07, 2011 9:59 PM EDT Updated: Apr 07, 2011 9:59 PM EDT  
Source: Ilario Pantano Source: Ilario Pantano
WILMINGTON, NC (WECT) - Republican Congressional Hopeful Ilario Pantano says politics is playing a role in a current issue his family is having with a dog rescue organization out of New Jersey.

The Pantano family recently took in two rescue puppies from a litter in Charlotte.  But, a national rescue group out of New Jersey claims the puppies were signed over to them and the Pantanos are not adequate candidates for full-time adoption.

Jacquie Yorke from the Doodle Rescue Collective Inc. tells she has reached out to the Pantanos to get the animals, but "they're refusing to hand them over to us."

"The facts of the case are simple, Puppies need to be rescued and my family stepped up. Now an animal rescue group in New Jersey is trying to deny these pets to my children because of who their father is. We were simply going to adopt the animals, but when liberal activists in New Jersey found out who I was, my politics made me a target.

"Instead of listening to more of her harassing and threatening phone calls, we decided to purchase the puppies outright from their lawful owner.  Why is this harassment and nonsense continuing?  Because I am a conservative Christian Republican Marine who hunts, I have been targeted by animal activists  that have called my wife and I terrible names and curses, which we have on a recorded voice mail.

"This activist has literally threatened to 'smear my family's good name all over the Internet.'  Sadly, this isn't about the puppies we bought for my children, this is about the politics of personal destruction.  Please pray for my family as we endure yet another round of slings and arrows from folks 600 miles away from Wilmington that seem intent on harassing my family and hurting my children and our good name," Ilario Pantano said in an emailed statement. "I didn't know that you had to be a Democrat to adopt a puppy. "
Pantano tells his family has received threatening voicemail messages from Yorke and had visits from local law enforcement because of this situation. The two puppies are named Jack Jack and Tullulah.

"My two boys should not be paying an emotional  price for their father's politics," said Jill Pantano in a released statement.  "It makes me sad."

Reached by phone from New Jersey, Yorke told, "these people are obviously doing everything in their power to get the media attention.  We are just trying to save our dogs. We tried to get them back a nice way," Yorke said.

Pantano's mother, Merry, sent a cease and desist order to Yorke, but Ilario Pantano says he is being threatened with a lawsuit over the animals.  Yorke tells they will go to court if they have to in this situation.

Pantano announced earlier this year that he intends to run for the 7th Congressional District seat currently held by Congressman Mike McIntyre (D).

Copyright 2011 WECT.  All rights reserved.

Verne Strickland Blogmaster

Thursday, April 7, 2011

Foil Mike McIntyre's plans to directly influence NC Redistricting -- his way!

Verne Strickland Blogmaster
April 7, 2011

Excessively incumbent congressman Mike McIntyre has plans to get involved in the vitally important process of redistricting in the State of North Carolina.

He has no business meddling in this. But . . . what is the old saying? "Fools rush in where angels fear to tread?" Well, let's leave it up to Mike to decide if he really intends to rush in. If so, perhaps he knows what he truly is.

I think some of the rumors about Mr. McIntyre's goofy ideas are gross exaggerations. One is that he will set up a booth outside the redistricting meetings where he'll hand out brochures saying, "It's Mike's Way or the Highway!" But no -- even our very own congressman wouldn't stoop that low. Right?

We'll just have to wait and see.

But let's get down to the business of the business at hand. And here it is.

All of the conservatives in South Eastern North Carolina are proud of what our Republican house and State Senators are doing in Raleigh.   Our 2010 teamwork throughout Southeastern North Carolina helped to turn back the liberal tide in Raleigh for the first time in 100 years.

In Washington we are trying to jump-start the economy, unravel Obamacare and balance the budget. In Raleigh we are finally standing up to Governor Purdue and the Tax and Spend liberals that have run this state for a century. 

But now, Congressman McIntyre is trying to undo the will of the people with a new email campaign. He even re-launched his website with a section on redistricting! Imagine the arrogance! We face a crisis is job creation, a third foreign war, a struggling educational system, and a social security and medicaire system that is on the verge of insolvency and Congressman Mcintyre is putting up new web pages about redistricting?  Now, he is even asking his liberal loyalits to pressure our newly elected Republicans!

Congressman McIntyre is spending his time and your money, working to keep his job, when he needs to be protecting yours.


 Want to show our new Republican leadership your support? You can call or email the  leadership and THANK THEM for the hard work of cleaning up a century of Democrats back room dealings:

Senator Bob Rucho (Rep) (919) 733-5655   or

Representative David R. Lewis (Rep) 919-715-3015 or

If you are really fired up, then please show up at these redistricting meetings. McIntyre will be sending his agents and you must be ready willing and able to counter them every step of the way. This is about truly representative democracy, not job security for an eight-term Democrat incumbent.

 Meeting Times and Locations

Brunswick County:

·         Thursday May5 at 7:00 p.m. Brunswick Community College

Cumberland County:

·         Thursday April 21 at 7:00 p.m. Fayetteville Tech. Community College

New Hanover County:

·         Thursday May5 at 7:00 p.m. Cape Fear Community College

Pender County:

·         Thursday May5 at 7:00 p.m.

·         Site to be determined

Robeson County:

·         Thursday April 21 at 7:00 p.m.   UNC Pembroke

Public Hearing Guidelines

Redistricting Committees of the 2011 General Assembly

1.      Speakers need to sign up on the “Speaker Sheet” in order to speak.

2.     Speakers will have up to 5 minutes for presentation to the Committee

3.     Registration for speaking will begin: At the hearing site: 1 hour prior to the convening of the hearing, and will close prior to the beginning of the hearing. On-line: 5 days in advance of the hearing, up to 24 speakers, and will close 24 hours in advance of the hearing.

4.     Speakers will be called according to the order of registration.

5.     If a speaker is not present when called, the speaker will be skipped at that time. Time permitting at the end of all registered speakers, those skipped will be allowed to speak.

6.     The presiding chair, at the chair’s discretion, may change these guidelines.

For those unable to attend a public hearing, written comments may be submitted for inclusion in the record. To submit public comment, please:

·         Visit the General Assembly web page at or;

·         Mail written comments to: Redistricting, Attention Erika Churchill, 300 N. Salisbury St., Suite 545, Raleigh, NC 27603-5925

That's about it for now. We've done some of your homework. Now it's up to you, friends and neighbors. Happy trails!

I am your humble servant. Verne.

Tuesday, April 5, 2011

McIntyre opponent drops out of Democratic campaign. Cites personal attacks.

Verne Strickland Blogmaster

Posted: Apr 05, 2011 8:25 PM EDT Updated: Apr 05, 2011 8:31 PM EDT 
Del Pietro Del Pietro
NEW HANOVER COUNTY, NC (WECT) -  Del Pietro has announced that he is dropping out of the Democratic campaign to challenge incumbent Congressman Mike McIntyre in 2012.

Pietro was recently the subject of a personal attack by a member of McIntyre's staff. Pietro told WECT News Tuesday night that he expected more similar attacks from inside the Democratic Party as the campaign continued, and he did not want to put his family through that type of politics.

"It's saddening," Pietro said, "but I think this is the right decision for the long term."

Pietro has ruled out a run for political office, but says he looks forward to endorsing a qualified primary and general election candidate to represent the citizens of District 7.

He issued this statement:

I am officially announcing that I will be withdrawing my intentions to challenge for the Democratic nomination for Congress in the 2012 election.  The direct attacks of this past week from Congressman McIntyre's staffer are an indication of what this campaign would be.

I have a wonderful and very loving family and they do not deserve to be put through such a terribly unethical campaign as put forth by Congressman McIntyre and his staffer.  
My heart goes out to the people of this district which is the poorest and sickest in North Carolina.  

May God be with you.

The official filing period for the Congressional seat does not open until February of 2012.

Copyright 2011 WECT. All rights reserved.

Mike McIntyre's deceitful plan to sway the results of NC redistricting is dishonest and underhanded.

This is Mike McIntyre's special web page to affect NC redistricting and keep his job! Let's stop this shameful action dead in its tracks!



Let’s Keep Southeastern North Carolina Together!
Dear Friends –
Do you want your next Congressman to be from Raleigh, Goldsboro, or Charlotte?  If not, then I need your help today!
Every ten years the North Carolina General Assembly draws new congressional districts based on the latest Census numbers.  That process has now begun in Raleigh, and we need to let our voices be heard to keep Southeastern North Carolina together in one congressional district!
There are 2 very important ways that you can help:
  1. Please look at the list below of the Members of the General Assembly who will be drawing the new maps .  Call your local N.C. Representatives and N.C. Senators and tell them it is critical that Southeastern North Carolina be kept together in one congressional district! 
  2. Please attend one of the public hearings  listed below that are being held and let your voice be heard that Southeastern North Carolina needs to stay in one congressional district!
Friends, this is a very serious issue and will affect our area for the next decade and beyond.  From our beautiful coast to our abundant agriculture fields, from the small towns to the larger cities, from the universities to the community colleges, from the cross roads to the highways, from the small businesses to the large manufacturers, and from people of all places and races, I have worked and traveled our area for many years getting to know you and help us build better communities.
That work must continue.
And it must continue in concert with one vision and one voice for all of Southeastern North Carolina in the halls of the U.S. Congress!
Please join me in standing up for our homes, our businesses, and our way of life and let’s keep Southeastern North Carolina together — moving forward!
Click here for more information about the North Carolina General Assembly Redistricting Committees!
Click here for more information about the Redistricting Meetings being held in your Community!

Verne Strickland Blogmaster     April 5, 2011

What will Congressman Mike think of next? Now he's trying to put pressure on the North Carolina Legislators appointed to do a fair and unbiased job of redistricting. His sole aim is to protect his chances for re-election. Democrats have had redistricting as their pet project for over 100  years. Now it's time for Republicans to 'have it their way'. Mike has no business meddling with the deliberations and the outcome of this important process. Call McIntyre today and tell him to play fair and square for a change. Here's his number: (202) 225-2731. He's waiting to hear from you.

McIntyre concerned about jobs (mostly his own). Congressman has plan to subvert NC redistricting to his own ends. Here's the scoop!

By Verne Strickland

Hello. It’s Verne. Your trusty old blogger bud. The conservative pundit who rats on pompous, big-spending, excessively incumbent, closet liberal Democrats -- plus commies, atheists, pacifists, radical Muslims, and Mormons with more than six wives? Know who I am now?

Well okay, then. I have a question for you. Have you talked with your congressman recently? Mr. McIntrye? From Lumberton? The guy who staged the little jobs summit recently? Where his aide dissed Mr. Del PIetro behind his back, telling a TV reporter Pietro was crazy, not all there, off his rocker, schizophrenic? Remember that?

Well, I think it’s time you did talk with your congressman. Because he’s acting mighty weird these days. You’re probably used to this. But this time it’s really bizarre. Maybe it’s Mr. McIntyre who’s off his rocker.
Truth is, Mike just don’t do right. He’s so bound up with hanging onto his own job that he’s ignoring the plight of the unfortunate jobless people in his own district. That’s selfish, disappointing, arrogant, and deplorable. 

The bottom line of my tirade here is to inform you that Mike has figured out a way to game the system on redistricting. His aim is to subvert the outcome and influence it in his favor.You can stop him in his tracks.

Mike has revamped his own website to program his robots so they will come together in a mass, or a pile, or possibly a wad, and do his bidding on this issue. They probably will. 

So let’s get our own true soldiers together and resist this audacious campaign by Congressman Mike McIntyre, who has faithfully worked to improve the lot of “his” people -- but after fourteen years in his cushy Barcalounger in Washington still lives in one of the poorest, sickest, most impoverished and demoralized counties in all of North Carolina! That would be Robeson County. So let’s cut to the chase.

McIntyre is using scare tactics to trick voters on redistricting and preserve the gerrymandered "good old boy" network.

We saw it with the bogus social security scare ads, and then the bogus fair tax scare ads.  Now we're even seeing it with redistricting.  How far will the Democrats go to keep their grip on power? Too far, you can bet.

As a government shutdown looms, trillions in deficits accumulate and unemployment and foreclosure continue to ravage Southeastern North Carolina, do you know whose job Congressman McIntyre is trying to save? HIS.

Are you as stunned as I am to learn that while our nation is struggling to undo the liberal's job-killing policies, Congressman McIntyre is busy trying to LOBBY the newly-elected leadership in Raleigh to keep his job?

Of all the Democrat and Republican congressman in North Carolina, Mike Mcintyre is the ONLY ONE who has re-dedicated part of his website to redistricting and launch a lobbying campaign to keep his job.

Call his office and ask him how he could possibly spend the time and energy on saving his job -- time that he should be spending on the people of North Carolina. 

Call Congressman McIntyre at (202) 225-2731 and ask, “Whose job are you really trying to protect, Mister Mike -- yours or the hapless people of your neglected district?"

Call the Congressman and tell him to get back to work and leave the district issues to the newly-elected legislators that the people of Southeastern North Carolina have empowered. Tell him that they should do their job just as you expect the congressman to do his. Will you please do dat?

You've seen it all, from voting machines that only make "mistakes" that favor the Democrats to Nancy Pelosi pumping in $570,000 dollars to bail out McIntyre at the last minute in the recent election.

Now they are at it again, right under your nose. How much do these liberal scalawags think will fit under your nose anyway? They are trying to intimidate our new Republican legislators. They are using fear to keep their hold on power. The only question is, are you going to let them win? We need a congressman in Washington fighting for OUR families, not HIS job security!

McIntyre has been paid over $2 million dollars of tax payer money in salary over the last 15 years. and that doesn't include the nearly $20 million for his staff. Whose interests is he actually looking out for?

I’m not through with this yet. This is so important, so cheeky, so downright onerous, that I am going to do a series on the issue, which maybe we’ll call “Mike and you. Who comes first? Well can you guess?” Not very catchy, but it'll have to do. I gotta rush this to press.

There will be a series of meetings coming up in April and May at convenient locations throughout Brunswick, Cumberland, New Hanover, Pender and Robeson Counties.

We will post the locations in our next report. Be sure to mark the date, time and place on your calendar. Or write it with your wife's lipstick on the bathroom mirror. This is big. Resolve to be there to resist McIntyre’s cheesy effort to get control of the redistricting process.

We’ll also explain how to register to voice your opinions, and how to assure that you are in compliance with the Public Hearing Guidelines.

Also call McIntyre’s office and let him know you don’t like him meddling with a fair and open redistricting plan. You didn't forget the number did you? It's  (202) 225-2731.

And visit the official Mike McIntyre web site to see what he’s doing. I don’t think you’ll be surprised. But I’ll wager you’ll be very disappointed.

Go there now --

Keep the faith, neighbors. I am your humble servant. Verne.

Monday, April 4, 2011

McIntyre aide apologizes for calling opponent Pietro "crazy". Will political potty mouth spark civil action?

Verne Strickland Blogmaster
April 4, 2011

A key Mike McIntyre staff member, Tony McEwen, last week told a television reporter that Del Pietro, an announced challenger to McIntyre, is "crazy". Ouch. He also reportedly said Pietro is "schizophrenic". Yikes. And for good measure, McEwen charged that Pietro is "off his rocker" and "not all there." Oh my!

Think about that for a moment. This wasn't trash talk between burly linemen across a scrimmage at a high school football game.

It was political venom spewed by a man who should know better. Tony McEwen is Congressman McIntyre's economic development director. McEwen flew off the handle during a jobs summit his boss at the time was hosting at the north campus of Cape Fear Community College.

The unfortunate remarks were made to a WWAY-TV3 news reporter, and McEwen apparently felt he was talking to an individual who might share his opinion, or at least keep quiet about it.

Didn't happen. To her credit the journalist reported the incident to her crew director, who passed it on to the unsuspecting victim, candidate Del Pietro.

That's when the lid blew off. Pietro was invited to go by the television station to give his side of the story, which wound up in neon on the evening news.

Then the predictable happened. After a rather considerable interval, Mr. McEwen got remorseful about his potty mouth and decided he'd better make nice. A news account of the follow-up apology was presented on the air and online on Monday -- six days after the unfortunate verbal back-biting took place:

WILMINGTON, NC / WWAY / April 4, 2011 -- An aide to Rep. Mike McIntyre has issued a formal apology to a man planning to challenge the Congressman next year after calling him "crazy." In a letter on Congress of the United States letterhead, McIntyre's Economic Development Director Tony McEwen writes to Del Pietro:

"Dear Del, Please accept my sincere apologies for the comments I made to the WWAY reproter about you while working at the Jobs Summit on 3/29/2011. They were not professional and portrayed you in a very unfair manner. Again, I ask that you accept my deepest apologies to you and your family."

After seeing our crew talking to Pietro at the event, McEwen told them Pietro was "crazy," "shaky," "schizophrenic" and "not all there."

Pietro said he accepts McEwen's apology, because he believes in forgiveness. But he also said that McEwen and the McIntyre's campaign are trying to derail his momentum in the race for the Democratic nomination next year.

When asked about McEwen's comments last week, McIntyre's Chief of Staff Dean Mitchell said in an e-mail to WWAY, "(A)ny comments Tony McEwen made with regard to the subject manner you referenced were not authorized by, nor reflective of, this office."

VS: Well, I guess not. But we'll have to take Mr. Mitchell's word for this, since the Congressman himself decided to soil his hands by offering his own comment about the tawdry incident.

Since this is the kind of embarrassing affair that most "mainstream" newspapers aren't fond of reporting about -- when Democrats are at fault -- it should be no surprise that the Star-News immediately got a bad case of lockjaw.

As far as I know, this political blog -- USA DOT COM -- was the only news source to join WWAY in letting the public in on the gaffe.

Here's some of what we reported, from an interview with Mr. Pietro following the McIntyre jobs event on March 29:

Pietro: “The slanderous attack that Tony McEwen used against me with a WWAY reporter is just very unfortunate. I fully plan to pursue all legal avenues to put a stop to this. It’s just completely inappropriate.”

VS: What are you considering in the wake of this incident?

Pietro: “I’m going to be pursuing all avenues in terms of civil litigation against Tony McEwen and the congressman. Tony is a representative of the congressman, and is doing the congressman’s dirty work, and basically the congressman is accountable for Tony’s remarks. They are baseless and it’s saddening that the congressman and his staff would stoop to this level.”

VS: You said that Mr. McEwan has run afoul of federal law?

Pietro: “Yes, he’s a federal employee covered by the Hatch Act, as I understand it, and he is not supposed to be campaigning while he is working in any way, shape or form. That’s the way I understand the law, and he clearly violated that law. When he made those remarks, he is technically campaigning against me. That’s an issue that’s to be reported to the Federal Government."

VS: What does the Democratic Party have to say about all this?

Pietro: “Tony is the State’s third vice chair of the party, and I was just told by a local Democrat that the party is going to put forth a resolution at our convention asking him to resign his office. This will be at either the county or the district level.

“This is just very dirty politics, and it’s uncalled for. They should be able to campaign on substance, but apparently if they don’t feel they can beat me on substance, they will just resort to these types of attacks.

“I am in consultation with an attorney right now to discuss what my legal options are in terms of filing a civil suit against both Tony and the congressman. This wasn’t typical political rhetoric, this was a direct slanderous attack, and I’m not going to tolerate it.”


VS: It is not clear if the rather tepid apology by the instigator of the ugly verbal fracas is the last we'll hear of it. This seem improbable, since it is clear that McEwen's tirade was intended to harm candidate Pietro's personal reputation.

Whatever comes next, if anything, we'll be there to report it -- even if news organizations with a Democrat bias can't find the time or space for it.