Senate 2008 Guru: Following the Races

Keeping a close eye on developments in the 2008 U.S. Senate races

Friday, February 09, 2007

When Republicans Lie

Some late-night bites for you insomniacs:

  • Colorado: Colorado Pols catches the McInnis camp changing its tune on primaries. When Scott McInnis wants to take his time, a primary "energizes and unifies the party"; but when he's the first one in the pool, then a primary can "cause further damage to the party." No, that doesn't smack of political opportunism. Not one bit. (I can't wait for Bob Schaffer to get in and pull McInnis way to the right, further solidifying Mark Udall's chances.)

  • Maine: Want both audio and visual proof of Susan Collins' broken promise to the voters of Maine? Then check this out. It's also here, courtesy of Craig from Turn Maine Blue.

  • Oregon: The DSCC has already sliced and diced the records of Susan Collins and John Sununu. Now they focus on Gordon Smith's hypocrisy on Iraq.

  • Idaho: Larry Craig's staff insults and yells at veterans. Will Larry Craig fire Chief of Staff Mike Ware for his unpatriotic verbal slap in the face of our brave Iraq War veterans? Don't hold your breath.


    Blogger VA Blogger said...

    What a worthless update this was.

    According to your link, in 2004, McInnis even said "primaries can be extremely divisive". In 2006, he said a primary would "further damage the party". SCANDAL!

    He said that competition "often" unifies the party; as in, sometimes it does, sometimes it doesn't. To err on the side of caution, you hope against one, just like you are hoping against a primary challenge to Mark Udall. That's not political opportunism, that's common sense. Perhaps you should have titled your piece "McInnis knows what's up". If he applies this kind of common sense to the people of Colorado, he'll be an even better Senator than he was a Congressman.

    Thank you for reminding us for the 20th time that Collins pledged to only serve two terms. What you haven't done is show who, besides ranting partisans like yourself and the DSCC, really cares? I haven't seen any indication that anybody inside the state of Maine cares; certainly, Collins' sky-high approval ratings don't indicate it. A hack with a blog can make all the accusations he likes; by all accounts, the people of Maine are eager to elect Collins to a third term.

    I wouldn't call a DSCC press release to be "slicing" or "dicing", and certainly avoided any talk about Collins' and Smith's moderate voting record.

    And I understand why its bad that the CoS of Larry Craig raised his voice in a disagreement with a veterans group. Can you please show me, in any news article about the event, where anybody insulted them? Or have you resorted to just making shit up now?

    9:02 AM, February 09, 2007  
    Blogger Senate2008Guru said...

    va blogger - I think you check my blog out more than I do. Thanks for reading. :)

    Straight up, when someone else is in first, McInnis says primaries are positive and when he's in first, he says they're divisive and that people should just get behind him. Lame. And you're just an apologist for him.

    Oh, and there will likely be 20 more reminders of Collins' pledge over the coming months. She made a promise and now she's breaking it. And it's not that Maine voters don't care. It's that people aren't paying attention to the politics yet, except us political junkies. Once Tom Allen (or another Dem) announces and makes a real race, and makes an issue out of the term limits pledge, people will pay attention and care.

    And when someone irrationally yells at me, I feel pretty insulted. va blogger, it's funny how you're happy to parse words here and accuse me of "making s*** up," but just a few lines up you don't give a second thought to Collins lying and breaking a very prominent campaign promise. If a Republican lies, it's OK to you. Very lame. It's one thing to be a GOP cheerleader if you agree with them (and I don't deny being a Dem cheerleader - I think Congress passes better laws with Dems in charge), but it's another thing to be a GOP apologist - that's pretty lame.

    11:05 AM, February 09, 2007  
    Blogger VA Blogger said...

    If you take McInnis's words out of context, you can paint them any way you like. In 2004, he said that primaries can be extremely divisive, though competition often energizes the party. In 2006, he said that a primary would damage the party, though if someone else jumped in, I'm sure he'd say that it will benefit him in the long run. Try as you might, his statements in 2006 match up perfectly to his statements in 2004.

    I think even if Allen makes an issue out of the pledge (which is pretty much the only thing negative you can find on Collins remarkable record), I still don't think the voters of Maine will care about it. The most recent poll (November 19, SurveyUSA) has her approval rating at 73%. Nearly 3 out of 4 voters approve of the job she's doing. Most, if not all, of the people who approve of the job she's doing would probably want her to continue her great work as a Senator. I don't think "Senator Collins wants to continue to serve you!" is the greatest attack ad.

    And thank you for confirming that you made up the line about the veterans being insulted by Craig's Chief of Staff. I anticipate you will edit your original post shortly. It doesn't matter how you would feel, especially given that you feely admit being partisanly biased against Republican senators. The veterans never said that Craig's staff insulted them, which means that you are blatantly lying. Then you turn around and call me lame.

    11:57 AM, February 09, 2007  
    Blogger Senate2008Guru said...

    va blogger - now you just have too much time on your hands.

    McInnis' statements don't "match up perfectly." If his recent statement said something to the effect of "primaries can be divisive, but they also strengthen the eventual nominee, so I welcome other Republican candidates to run for Senate in 2008 with me" then it would match up. But in 2004 he gave himself primary wiggle room, and in 2006-7 he just wants Schaffer to stay out of it.

    And "Senator Collins made a promise to the voters of Maine and then broke it and lied to your face and is pretty much willing to say anything to get elected" is a pretty solid ad, I think. You can spin it all you want, but a lie is a lie. If you want to continue to be an apologist, va blogger, go ahead, but you don't gain any credibility doing so. And her approval rating is pre-campaign. It's something that you don't have it in you to say "Yeah, she broke a promise. She has a high approval rating from her constituents, but, for better or worse, she did tell her electorate a falsehood."

    I also find it pretty amazing that you don't have any problem with Senator Craig's Chief of Staff verbally-spitting on brave Iraq War veterans, but you get in a pretty big huff when I post a link to a story about it. Says something about where your biases lie. Like I said, lame.

    1:04 PM, February 09, 2007  
    Blogger VA Blogger said...

    My biases should be obvious. What makes you think I don't take offense to his CoS raising his voice in disagreement? I consider it a mis-step, and something that shouldn't happen, but I don't view it with such hostility that I'm compelled to lie and embellish the situation.

    Its all for moot, however, because its unlikely that you guys will be able to even field a challenger in Idaho.

    You can't compare McInnis's statements in '04 and '06 because he doesn't have a primary challenger yet. If he does, that's when you ask him what he thinks, and I imagine his views will be about the same as they were two years ago. And again, I don't see the problem with a candidate wishing for a clear primary field. You've wished the same thing for Mark Udall many times.

    If you want me to stop responding to your posts, then you should stop writing posts of questionable veracity and undoubtable partisanship. In particular, in the future, you should refrain from making up lies in order to try and embarrass an incumbent senator.

    1:55 PM, February 09, 2007  
    Blogger Senate2008Guru said...

    va blogger, you say "I imagine his views will be about the same" - before you knew things matched up perfectly, and now you imagine... come on, just admit your contention on this is full of hot air.

    Yeah, I want a clear primary for Udall. Clear primaries are just about always better, with very few exceptions - I don't change my tune on that. However, when McInnis was thinking about getting in the Gov race in '04, then primaries were fine. Now that he's the first one in the pool, they're bad - like my original post says.

    Similarly, in New Hampshire, while I don't think that an NH-Dem Senate primary will be destructive because NH-Dem primaries seem to be more cordial and less nasty, and will take airtime away from John Sununu (as I've posted on in the past), I would of course prefer a consensus candidate early, if one happens to do much better against Sununu than others. As long as their politics are all good, let's get behind the one with the best chance to win. I'm consistant. McInnis ain't.

    And what makes me think you don't take offense at Larry Craig's Chief of Staff's actions? Compare the statement of one of the soldiers at the meeting with your statement:

    Army Reserve Capt. Jon Soltz: "I told him it was rather unprofessional to yell at a soldier who fought for our country."

    va blogger: And I understand why its bad that the CoS of Larry Craig raised his voice in a disagreement with a veterans group.

    Note any slightly nuanced differences? You tone down the Craig staffer's actions to make it seem much less harsh than it was. The veteran who met with the staffer said that the Craig staffer "yelled" at him, not "raised his voice in disagreement" or whatever other wordy articulation you can come up with to minimize the exchange.

    If the Chief of Staff of a Democratic Senator was caught by the press "yelling" at our veterans, it would probably make a lot more news (Senator Kerry's "botched joke" incident is a not-exact-but-related example), but since it was a Republican then it's OK, I guess...

    And you still haven't found the gumption to say, "Regardless of the quality of Susan Collins' service, good or bad, better or worse, she did lie to the voters of Maine." Well?

    2:31 PM, February 09, 2007  
    Blogger VA Blogger said...

    He didn't say, "Primaries are fine" in 2004, he said "primaries can be extremely divisive, but they can also energize the party". You always seem to leave out that first part--where he calls primaries extremely divisive--because you know it eliminates this fairly weak attack.

    And my words stack up to the statements of both the veteran at the meeting and Craig's spokesperson:

    Army Reserve Capt. Jon Soltz, 29, and former 101st Airborne Division Sgt. Joe Kramer, 31, say Chief of Staff Mike Ware raised his voice or yelled at them and pointed at them during a scheduled meeting in Craig’s office.

    Craig spokesman Dan Whiting said the men agreed to disagree.

    Its not a wordy articulation designed to minimize the exchange, its taking the exact words that the veterans themselves used. The only difference between my coverage of the event and yours is that you purposefully lied. I wouldn't be so quick to talk about credibility when you make things up, and continue to refuse to amend your original post.

    And Collins' "lie" was a change of heart. I will admit that she renegged on a pledge that she had made, and if the voters of Maine choose to kick her out of her seat because of it, they have the right to do so. I just haven't seen any proof thus far that anybody aside from out-of-state hacks like yourself and the DSCC really cares that Collins changed her mind on the two-term pledge. If I were inclined to guess, I would guess that somebody with an approval rating of 73% would find her constituents eager for her to serve another term, regardless of what she said when she was first elected.

    2:52 PM, February 09, 2007  
    Blogger Senate2008Guru said...

    Right - McInnis thought that primaries could energize the party in 2004, when he wanted to join one; but they don't energize the party all of a sudden now that he's the first one in. What aren't you getting?

    And you are not taking the "exact words" that the veterans themselves used. You're taking the words that the reporter and the Craig spokesman used! The veteran said "yell." The words you bolded, "raised his voice" and "disagree," were used by the reporter and the Craig spokesman, respectively. Did you even read the article? Get a handle on reality.

    And Collins' lie is just a "change of heart" - talk about a "wordy articulation designed to minimize" the impact of something. (And talk about Republicans getting away with things that Democrats would be raked over the coals for in the media.) If you pay a mortgage or make car payments or pay rent, I hope your bank or landlord doesn't have a "change of heart" on what to charge you every month.

    4:13 PM, February 09, 2007  
    Blogger VA Blogger said...

    In 2004, McInnis said a primary could do two things: 1) It could energize the party, and 2) it could be extremely divisive.

    In 2006, McInnis said a primary would be damaging to the party. Just because he didn't say in the same sentence "it could energize the party" doesn't mean he changed his mind. In 2004, he addressed two possible consequences of primaries; In 2006-2007 thus far, he's only addressed one possible consequence. The worst you can accuse him of is not being thorough.

    The text of the article that you quoted says that the veterans said the CoS "raised his voice". That is what I was going off of when I said he "raised his voice in disagreement". I wasn't being tricky with words, and I wasn't minimalizing the impact. I used words directly pulled from the article you're quoting. Get over it. To ask if I even read the article when I repeatedly quoted directly from the article is stupid.

    And Collins' change of heart is exactly that. Ten years ago, she thought the best way for a Senator to serve the people was to step down after two terms. After ten years, she has changed her mind on that. She broke a campaign pledge, yes, but its a stretch to call it a lie, and its a flat-out falsification to say she "turned her back on the voters".

    All of which is moot anyways if no one in Maine cares, which so far there's no evidence to suggest they do.

    4:39 PM, February 09, 2007  
    Blogger Senate2008Guru said...

    -I won't bother repeating myself on the McInnis stuff since you're just going in circles at this point.

    -Right, the "text of the article" described things a certain way - and the soldier himself described it another, more serious way. And I'm going with the soldier's actual words, not the characterizations of the article's author or the Craig spokesman. I trust the soldier more than the Larry Craig spokesman - call that a bias if you'd like.

    -OK, so Collins served as an aide to Senator William Cohen of Maine for twelve years, seeing what it was like to be a Maine Senator. Then she ran the first time in 1996 and made the term limit pledge. Apparently, after 12 years as a Senate aide, she thought that was a good chunk of time. But then, in 2002, running for re-election, she re-iterated her pledge. Apparently, after twelve years as an aide and six years as a Senator herself, she still thought her promise was worth keeping. And now, only with re-election looming, she suddenly has a "change of heart," only now that her promise comes due. This demonstrates such a blatant lack of integrity that I'll let you "interpret" the events however you want. We'll see how much the voters care, I guess.

    1:26 PM, February 10, 2007  
    Blogger VA Blogger said...

    The only reason we're going in circles is because you completely omit half of what McInnis said in 2004 in an effort to make what amounts to a very lame point

    The only problem with what you said is that I'm not quoting Craig's spokesperson; I'm quoting the very article that you posted. And now you're calling into question the writing of that article because I'm using a valid phrase that you don't like. As I said, get over it. When I said he "raised his voice in disagreement", there is just as much evidence present to support my interpretation of it as there is to support yours.

    There is NO amount of evidence, however, to support the assertion that Craig's Chief of Staff insulted the veterans. So you remain a blogger who is willing to LIE in order to DEFAME an incumbent Senator. Why do you continue to refuse to address this, and refuse to edit your original post?

    I don't care if you thinks it lacks integrity. You're the last person to be able to talk about intregrity. All that matters is what the voters of Maine think, and given Collins' astronomical approval ratings, I don't think they'll care much at all.

    2:52 PM, February 10, 2007  

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