Friday, October 06, 2006

And Then It Got Nasty . . .

With polls deadlocked, pressure building and the calendar counting down, this may be remembered as the week when Missouri's U.S. Senate race turned ugly.

Just when Mizzou released a study on how Jim Talent and Claire McCaskill were running a "positive and policy oriented race," things, at least, anecdotally seem to be taking a turn for the worse.

First, video emerges of two kids taking down a Talent for Senate sign.

Now, all this buzz about a new Talent radio ad -- which I haven't even heard. I've just heard a lot about it. A search of his website and the net couldn't turn it up. But as soon as I walked into work Thursday, one of my colleagues came up to me and said, "I heard this Talent ad on the radio this morning. Man, it's nasty!"

What does it say?

All my co-worker could remember about the ad was that Talent was calling McCaskill a "liar and a cheat." "And it's the way it was said, 'She's a liar, and a cheat,'" my colleague told me.

Now even though I've yet to read the content of the ad, I publish this exchange because it's a prime lesson in what people take away from political ads - the negativity. It makes you sit up. It stays with you.

Meanwhile, the McCaskill campaign quickly issued a release calling it a "new low" in Missouri politics.

"After weeks of running negative and misleading ads, Sen. Jim Talent's campaign has reached a new low. For the first time in Missouri history, an ad approved by a candidate for statewide office calls his opponent a 'liar' and a 'cheat,'" read the release.

Perhaps the Talent campaign is still brewing over McCaskill's comments a few weeks back, when she labeled the junior senator "a false patriot."

That was pretty tough stuff. Maybe now a little payback?

On top of all this, as we prepare for our KY3 debate on Oct. 16th, I'm being bombarded with e-mails and phone calls from people with suggested questions. The problem is, a good portion of the questions seem partisan driven, from one side or the other. They aren't questions, they are accusations. To be fair, we've gotten some very good ones, and to those fair and open-minded people, I say, keep them coming. But if you just hate all Republicans or are on a mission to destroy Claire McCaskill, save your time. Your question will never make our air anyway.

Meanwhile, others are writing to me about McCaskill's ad on veterans featuring a guy named "Josh."

To put it bluntly, some of our viewers just don't buy that "Josh" is real or had to wait for a doctor's appointment. They are also questioning the injury he had in Iraq, "a busted ankle and post-traumatic stress." The tone of the e-mails are skeptical and cynical. I have asked the McCaskill campaign for background information about "Josh" so I can confirm his story and they have promised to get back to me.

All this nastiness seems to be building this week.

Maybe I should've smelled it in the air.
I probably shouldn't have been that naive. It was bound to happen.

After all, we've got a hell of a race on our hands.


kabby1 said...

I think I resent the suggestion that partisan questions are by definition not valid questions.

For example my question has to do with how the candidates view the way the President uses signing statements (more than any other President has ever used them) to ignore legislation passed by Congress and signed into law by this President.

Now you may assume that because I ask that question I will be voting for Democrats this election, and therefore I have asked a partisan question.

But there is a real constitutional issue with these signing statements. Can the President sign legislation and at the same time say I'm going to ignore part of this legislation becuase it infringes on my authority. And I think it's a fair question for both candidates to address. Do they believe in the balance of powers or not?

If the President disagress with the legislation, shouldn't he simply veto it?

bobicus tomatocus said...

So wait, you mean all those advertisements Claire has been runing since August were positive?

What a Joke!

In case you havent noticed Claire has been running really negative/nasty advertisements about Jim Talent being in bed with "big oil," giving the shaft to veterans and stealing Christmas.

Come on. Are you telling me you forgot those Mc Caskill advertisements? Or are you trying to gen up bad mojo against Talent by not pointing out that Mc Caskll has been runing "negative" advertisements for some time now?

kabby1 said...

What did I say that had anything to do with type of advertisements that McCaskill has or has not been running?

I was only addressing the kind of questions that might or should be asked at the KY3 debate?

But since you brought it up, McCaskill has spoken accurately about Talent's record. An incumbent has a record that is open to debate. If you don't like an opponent bringing up that record, tough.

Citizenkan said...

Stealing Christmas, Bobi? That is a bogus accusation OWNED by the religious right and Bill O'Reilly! And Talent is in bed with a lot more lobbyists than just big oil. So all in all, I think Talent was getting some pretty decent treatment. Better than most republicans currently deserve.

bobicus tomatocus said...

Kan, I was trying to be sarcastic. I actually do not like BOR.

McCaskill has spoken accurately about Talent's record

Actually, no, she has not accurately spoken about Talent's record. She has lied on everything from the energy bill to his voting record on veterans affairs.

Compare that with Claire lying about her own phantom voting record and saying that she supports the troops when in fact she opposes the mission. Any military person understands that if you oppose the mission you are infact in opposition to the people carrying out the mission.

Its a quaint little lie that Dems like to try and sell people who have not been put in harms way.

kabby1 said...

No, the Republicans are the ones trying to propagate the myth that you can't support the troops without also supporting the President.

I support the troops by not wanting them to be a on mission where they have done all that they can do. John Murtha knew that a year ago, because that's what the generals were telling him. John Warner is now realizing it, too.

Citizenkan said...

Well, I now know one redeeming quality you possess, Bobi.

You don't like BOR. (I don't think he really does either.)