Monday, May 02, 2005

More Outlandish GOP Attacks

by Kyle Michaelis
This weekend, I received a mailing making the preposterous claim that Lincoln City Council candidate Dan Marvin would be a tool of developers from some made-up front group, all on the basis that he has the backing of two men with some degree of development interests. Who are they kidding?

The Republicans in this race are all trying to outdo one another as slaves to endless expansion. Dan Marvin, on the other hand, is one of only two candidates (the other being Terry Werner) to receive an A rating from the Lincoln Neighborhood Alliance, a group with rather divergent interests from the development communtiy. That Dan Marvin is able to bridge such a divide shows just how strong a candidate he is and how strong an asset to Lincoln he would be.

Meanwhile, the Lincoln Journal-Star reports on the latest absurd and vicious attack against Terry Werner, this one laughable if it didn't follow on the heels of so many other treasonous violations of the public's trust:
Lincoln's City Council race has officially gone to the dogs. But apparently not to those at the Capital Humane Society. The negative campaign ads saturating the city council race took a new turn Saturday when some Lincolnites got a mail flier accusing Democratic incumbent Terry Werner of stonewalling contract negotiations between the Humane Society and the city.

Bob Downey, the humane society's executive director, found out about the ads when he started getting messages on his answering machine. He wants people to know his organization had nothing to do with them.

"We have no knowledge of this happening,'' he said. "We don't know . . . the group that sent this out. We were not contacted for use of our name in any such manner. If we had been, we would not have given our permission....''

The flier says: "For 30 years, Lincoln has trusted the Humane Society for animal rescue and shelter. This year, for the first time ever, Terry Werner has personally stonewalled a valid, competitive contract with the humane society. Why would he be so mean? Friends of Lincoln's Cats and Dogs thought you should know, before you vote....''

Werner said the return address is Nebraska Printing Center's post office box. Scott Stewart, who owns the printer business, has paid for ads critical of Werner. "The Republican Party will stop at nothing,'' Werner said. "It's all about winning. Period.''
"Why would he be so mean?" Is that what this election has come to? My God, how did the Republican Party and those doing its bidding ever sink so low?

Even the LJS has had to publicly go on record criticizing the Republicans many trespasses against common sense and human decency in the name of partisan gain:
The Republican Party is putting all the warts of partisan politics on display with its attack ads in the race for three at-large seats on the Lincoln City Council. Lincoln voters should remember that they hold the power.

At minimum they can refuse to pay any attention. To send a stronger message they can vote for candidates targeted by the ads. If the attack ads succeed, they'll multiply in the next election.

There was a time when political animals laid low in nonpartisan elections, where, as a matter of law, candidate names are on the ballot without political affiliation. Those days slipped into history some time ago.

Finally, in this city election the Republicans have dropped any pretense of restraint. They're pouring major sums of money — by city election standards — into ads attacking Dan Marvin for doing the same thing Republican candidates did.

The voter is left with no other conclusion than Republican Party officials don't give a fiddle about the issues. They're not focused on finding the best way to deal with the challenges facing the city. All they care about scoring an election victory.

Not all Republicans, it should be quickly noted, agree with the tactics being employed by party officials acting in their name. On Thursday, Republicans Jan Gauger and Russ Bayer and independent Brad Korell, who served with Marvin on a citizens committee that recommended a bond issue, publicly blasted the anti-Marvin campaign.

"I think it's a really low point for my party," said Gauger, who was elected to the Lancaster County Board on the GOP ticket. "I don't think that's the way we want to win an election..."

Said Republican Bayer : "I'm fed up with it."

He couldn't have put it better. But it's only going to stop when enough people are so fed up with it that they show up at the ballot box to register their displeasure.
We are getting a good glimpse of new Nebraska Republican Party Executive Director Jessica Moenning's campaign strategy. It's obvious there's no depth to which she will not sink.

Is this outrageous and despicable behavior really the best that Nebraska Republicans have to offer? Voters must stand up and vote NOW against this pathetic and unprincipled power grab or Nebraska's entire political climate runs the risk of turning into a toxic hell of mud-slinging and personal attacks.

Meanwhile, for the sake of the state and the common good, honest and decent Republicans should call for the immediate dismissal of Moenning, former campaign director for now-Congressmen Jeff Fortenberry, before she is allowed to corrupt the vital 2006 election process and the whole Republican Party infrastructure with her hostile and truly undemocratic (dare I say unamerican?) style of political warfare.


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