Skip to comments.Barletta's Republican opponent was a Democrat until recently (Mayor Lou)
Posted on 01/03/2010 1:14:30 PM PST by Born Conservative
The Republican aiming to derail Hazleton Mayor Lou Barletta's latest run for Congress is a recently converted Democrat who contributed to Hillary Clinton's presidential campaign last year.
Christopher Paige registered in Monroe County as a Democrat in September 2006 and did not switch to the Republican Party until March 30, 2009, according to county records.
All told, he contributed almost $5,000 to state and federal Democratic candidates since 2004, according to a review of records compiled by the Center for Responsive Politics and the Pennsylvania Department of State.
Mr. Paige contributed $2,300 to Mrs. Clinton's campaign last year; $250 to current Senate candidate Joe Sestak's first congressional campaign in 2006; $250 to Gov. Ed Rendell's re-election in 2006; $1,800 to Sen. John Kerry's 2004 presidential campaign; and $250 to former Democratic National Committee chairman Howard Dean's 2004 presidential campaign.
Mr. Paige and Mr. Barletta are set to vie for the Republican nomination to the 11th Congressional District seat held since 1985 by Democratic Rep. Paul E. Kanjorski.
More recently, Mr. Paige has contributed to a Republican.
In September, he gave $1,000 to U.S. Rep. Roy Blunt, a former House Republican whip, who is running for the Senate in Missouri next year.
Mr. Paige, a Long Island, N.Y., native, lives in Barrett Twp. in Monroe County. An attorney and hedge fund manager, he moved to the county in 2006.
"I was a Democrat at the time so I supported the Democratic Party's candidates. I was wrong, and I've seen the error of my ways," he said. "It's not anything that I hide."
On his Web site, he confronts his past as a Democrat head on.
"Until recently, I was a Democrat because I believe that government should protect the powerless from the powerful, but President Obama and Congressman Kanjorski have transformed the Democratic Party into the powerful from whom we all need to be protected," he wrote. "In the words of Ronald Reagan, 'I didn't leave the Democratic Party; the Democratic Party left me.' "
Mr. Paige said his Democratic past helps him as a candidate because he knows how to speak to Democrats, whose support a Republican will need to win the mostly Democratic district.
"I am the swing voter that we have to win over in order to win," he said.
Asked how Republicans could have faith he would support Republican principles, he answered with a question.
"How can they have faith that Lou Barletta will support Republican principles?" he said. "He is raising taxes 70 percent. He has already betrayed them."
That was a reference to Mr. Barletta's proposal to raise Hazleton's property taxes by 70 percent.
Mr. Paige defended his support for Mrs. Clinton as "infinitely preferable" to supporting Mr. Obama.
"Hillary Clinton was at least someone who would respond to political imperatives, respond to facts and things like that. She wasn't (for) this suicidal liberalism of Barack Obama," he said.
In the fall election, he voted for Republican Sen. John McCain of Arizona. Mr. Paige's wife, Michele, actually contributed $250 to Mr. McCain's campaign.
"It's our money," he said.
Vince Galko, Mr. Barletta's campaign manager, said anyone has the right to change registration.
"In regards to Mr. Paige, we welcome him to the Republican Party," Mr. Galko said.
But Mr. Paige's "extremely negative campaign" so far against Mr. Barletta could raise questions as to "why he joined the Republican Party," Mr. Galko said.
Mr. Paige has accused Mr. Barletta of giving comfort to racists through his campaign against illegal immigration, a claim Mr. Galko has disputed.
i’m sure barletta’s going to be unpopular with all the illegal voters.
The Rinos love recruiting from the DemocRATic ranks.
Just like McLame!!
If I am understanding this then it looks like the GOP is repeating NY23. I say that voters give them the same result. Only watch out for fraud and corruption from Acorn.
It sure does. I always thought a “3rd party” was a bad idea, but with this going on....
Actually, PA 10 is right next to this distict, and is represented by Chris Carney, whom McCain just tried to recruit (I posted threads here on this)
ACORN needs to be trumped! Suggestions......?
3rd party ALWAYS throws the elections to the left! Republicans need to be CONSERVATIVE, solidify the base and sweep elections!! It’s the ONLY way...
An exception was James L. Buckley in NY in 1970.
Shades of Felix Dzerzhinski....In Paige I smell a rat!
Let him first create a track record of at least 2 years for his constituents to believe that he has truly "turned a new leaf", and has left the dark side.
Let him first create a track record of at least 2 years for his potential constituents to believe that he has truly "turned a new leaf", and has left the dark side.
Paige is one of those New Yorkers that ruined NEPA, especially Monroe county, ask anyone that lives there what happened to the crime rate in Monroe and Pike counties after 9-11 when the great NY-NJ exodus came, they still work in the city and leave their latch-key kids "Home Alone" to wreck havoc.
As to that 70% tax increase, some of the homes in Hazleton hadn't been assessed since the '60's, the owners were paying almost nothing in property taxes compared to new owners who were paying more than their share, reassessment had to be done. Besides it was a county-wide reassessment not just Hazleton.
Nothing that we could get away with. All we can do is to keep exposing them.