Bike-Hating Rep. Patrick McHenry Fends Off Challenger

Congresswoman-elect Kathy Dahlkemper overcame ridicule for her "wacky" notion that Pennsylvanians should try walking and cycling. But down in western North Carolina, voters returned Rep. Patrick McHenry — shown here mocking, and misrepresenting, the federal bike commuter tax benefit — to Washington.

Though his state also went for Barack Obama, the outspoken conservative Republican defeated Democratic challenger Daniel Johnson handily. The Hickory Record reports:

"The morals and values I took with me to Washington — I still have
them," he said. "I’m not going to stop fighting for conservative ideals
now."

McHenry’s values and ideals have earned him a lot of views on YouTube, where his anti-cycling speech has been given special treatment.

Video: GreenMaterialism/YouTube

  • if i were a millionaire vigilante – my first item of business would be to get this midget out of a job.

  • I agree with the video’s closing comments: $1 million a year sound cheap to provide infrastructure for bicycling. If they were smart and fiscally minded, I bet they could get all their projects done within budget!

  • I must confess I had heard neither of Rep. McHenry nor his rant, so in doing so (better late than never) I sent the card-carrying Lollipop Guild member an email:

    Rep. McHenry,

    I just saw news that you won re-election to your House seat. Via YouTube I also discovered your recent anti-bicycle rant on the floor of Congress.

    As a resident of Los Angeles my opinions are meaningless to you, but solely because of your office your opinions against bicycling have carried all the way across the country. Thus, as someone who has commuted by bike some 10,000 miles over the last two years, I am compelled to express how disappointed I am with the dismissive sarcasm you demonstrated against what is my chosen form of primary transport.

    Though you’re apparently unwilling to consider it, bicycling is a viable form of transportation that should be supported, not condemned. What a shame you chose to showcase such narrow-minded opposition to such an alternative.

    I doubt if I’ll have to worry about your name popping up as a candidate for any elected offices with higher profiles or greater national significance, but I’ll be keeping my eye out for it just in case your aspirations match your denigrations.

    Sincerely,
    Will Campbell

  • nice one will. i wrote him a letter a couple of months ago, pretending to be a resident of his district. never heard back.

  • Actually I am from McHenry’s district and he is far from a bicycle hater. In fact last month I rode with him in a local bicycle ride he attends every year that raises money for pediatric cancer research. This speech was not about bike-hating, but about the fact that its gonna take a lot more than bike riding to cure our energy problems. I have been a cyclist and bicycle advocate for over 25 years and I could understand that.
    McHenry is popular in his district because he is the most responsive representative to his constituents we have ever had. I have never donated a penny to any of his campaigns, but I got to know him because – believe it or not – he returns the phone calls he gets from the people who live in his district.

  • i don’t believe you.

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