Wednesday, October 20, 2010
The Gun Owners Flier
There has been some distraction in the Congressional race because of a brochure sent to targeted voters in South Dakota by Kristi Noem targeting Stephanie Herseth Sandlin's record on Second Amendment issues.
My friend, Bill Fleming, brought the brochure to my attention.
Here are my thoughts:
1. The brochure is wrong. Dead wrong. It lists Herseth Sandlin's Gun Owners of America grade as D. It's a B-. You can see that for yourself here. They have not rated Noem.
2. It implies (by omission) that Herseth Sandlin is not the NRA's endorsee for the South Dakota race. The NRA has a long-standing policy of endorsing any incumbent with an A rating. Stephanie has an A rating from the NRA. So does Noem.
Do I think the mistakes were intentionally published to mislead the public? Yes, I do. And, I am disappointed in Noem's campaign staff for resorting to the kind of misleading crap that the Democrats have been doing for years. (COMMENT HERE HAS BEEN DELETED, WITH MY APOLOGY BECAUSE IT WAS UNINTENTIONALLY OFFENSIVE.)
Do I think Noem was aware that the brochure contained patently wrong information that was intentionally published to mislead? No. But, that's not an excuse. (An excuse is a thin wisp of a reason, wrapped in a lie). I expect my congressperson to surround him/herself with competent, honest people. Clearly, that did not happen here.
Do I think Noem has once again shot herself in the foot with this brochure? Probably. But, probably not enough to turn the election. The race is neck and neck, as I have repeatedly said it would be. This mistake does not help her. Prior to this, all Herseth Sandlin had to talk about against Noem was her bloody driving record. Now, Noem has handed Herseth Sandlin the club she'll use to ...well...club her.
Will voters make their decision on this very close race based upon the circumstances surrounding this one brochure alone? Probably not. But it was a bonehead thing for the Noem campaign to do.
This will be a very tight race. I believe Noem was on the right track hanging Nancy Pelosi and her hideous record around Stephanie's neck in the manner that Obama tied Bush around McCain's. The fact of the matter is that Noem and Herseth Sandlin agree on most issues surrounding the Second Amendment. I can't think of any issue upon which they disagree. She should have ignored it, or at the very least pointed out her own record without mention of Stephanie's.
It seems like Josh Shields has taken a lesson from Democratic pit viper Steve Jarding. That's just too bad. A brochure like this one sent out under my photo and including my name would have resulted in some folks being dismissed...for even suggesting it. And, that hasn't happened, which is also disappointing.
As I said when Noem became the candidate, the race was hers to lose. She just got sacked on second down. She has time. But, Republicans had better hope she doesn't have to bring on the punting team.
Posted by Michael Sanborn at 2:47 PM