Terry McAuliffe’s Restaurant Deal With Haley Barbour

Hmmm. Does this anecdote reassure you about Terry McAuliffe’s skill with money?

In late 1999, [Haley] Barbour and Tommy Boggs were planning to open a downtown restaurant called the Caucus Room, which The Washington Post described as a “red-meat emporium” that “will serve up power, influence, loopholes, money and all the other ingredients that make American Democracy great.” Seeking investors, Barbour called McAuliffe and asked for $100,000, which he sent over immediately. A while later, Barbour called back, said they were oversubscribed and sent McAuliffe back a check for $50,000. “So I figure I made 50 in the deal,” said McAuliffe, who never saw a penny more.

Hahahahahaha. Er, no, Mr. McAuliffe, you didn’t “make 50 in the deal”; you gave a retired RNC chair and then-lobbyist $50,000 to start a restaurant. That restaurant is still in business; the Caucus Room restaurant changed its name and is now “Social Reform.” Really.

Then again, perhaps it was money well spent for McAuliffe in terms of influence and favors to be returned, down the road a bit. Haley Barbour, of course, went on to become governor of Mississippi . . . where the state Development Authority gave GreenTech $3 million in loan assistance related to the company’s Tunica County plan and provided $2 million to the county to purchase land for the facility. McAuliffe, of course, was chairman of GreenTech Automotive at the time.

Most Popular

Culture

Courage: The Greatest of Virtues

EDITOR’S NOTE: The following is Jonah Goldberg’s weekly “news”letter, the G-File. Subscribe here to get the G-File delivered to your inbox on Fridays. Dear Reader (Or Listener), As the reporter assigned the job of writing the article about all of Sidney Blumenthal’s friends and supporters told his ... Read More
Immigration

My American Dream

This morning, at 8 a.m., I did something I’ve wanted to do for as long as I can remember: I became an American. I first applied for a visa in early 2011, and since then I have slowly worked my way through the system — first as a visa-holder, then as a permanent resident (green card), and, finally, as a ... Read More
U.S.

The Gun-Control Debate Could Break America

Last night, the nation witnessed what looked a lot like an extended version of the famous “two minutes hate” from George Orwell’s novel 1984. During a CNN town hall on gun control, a furious crowd of Americans jeered at two conservatives, Marco Rubio and Dana Loesch, who stood in defense of the Second ... Read More