Posted at 9:23 AM on October 26, 2006
by Bob Collins
I think at the big election night party, we're going to be voting on the most powerful ads of the campaign season. This might be in the running.
(h/t Laura McCallum)
Posted at 12:26 PM on October 26, 2006
by Bob Collins
The folks at Project Vote Smart are out with a news release today lamenting the poor participation in their NPAT -- the National Political Awareness Test -- by Minnesota candidates and officeholders.
Project Vote Smart is an admirable project which assumes that candidates and officeholders are interested in doing everything they can to inform the voter.
And they are.
As long as they don't have to answer, you know, questions.
A few years ago, when I was putting together Campaign 2004, we put together a legislative guide of candidates and sent a questionnaire to all candidates and current officeholders with 10 questions, along with a request for a statement on their candidacy. If they had something, we'd post it.
Most ignored it. A couple told us why, including one -- who gave us the statement but refused to answer the questions -- because "her position might change." Huh?
Maybe MPR's audience wasn't big enough to warrant a candidate -- or more likely some staffer -- taking the time to answer "yes" or "no" to 10 simple questions. But that doesn't explain Project Vote Smart being all dressed up and having no date. They have a huge audience.
Same thing with Select A Candidate. Some candidates were willing to answer specific questions, some wanted nothing to do with it (as if that would somehow stop us from indicating their positions on major issues).
In a way, it's hard not to blame them. Being specific about issues can come back to haunt you. Someone will charge you with "flip flopping." So the result is often candidates who'd just rather not go on the record with things like.... positions on issues. Why should they?
Other candidates say "we get surveys all the time, we don't have time to answer them?" That one still gets me, because the claim is made we don't have time to spread the message of what our position is because we're busy out ...ummm.... spreading our message. Whacky, ain't it?
But there's the Project Vote Smart list at that link above. And there's the comment section just below here. If there's a candidate reading this -- and I know you're out there -- and you didn't answer NPAT, maybe you could answer just one question, then.
Posted at 12:50 PM on October 26, 2006
by Bob Collins
The Prairie Public televised debate between myself and Collin will air on Public TV stations out of Fargo, Appleton and Brainerd on Friday, Oct 27 at 8 PM. It will rebroadcast on Sunday, Nov 4 at 4 PM. It is also my uinderstanding that the audio will be made available on Prairie Public Radio. There is a possibility that TPT out of the Twin Cities may also pick it up, but I don't know any scheduled times yet.
1) Laura McCallum and I are on with Tom Crann this afternoon talking about this:
(Audio later) Here you go.
Support him or oppose him, a reasonable person has to admit: Rep. Mark Kennedy's new strategy of running on Iraq is pretty darned interesting.
Now there's an argument, I suppose, on whether this strategy is an act of desperation -- he did wait until a three weeks before Election Day to hammer the issue -- or guts (there's not many people pinning an Election Day win on the Iraq issue), but there isn't a better storyline in American politics right now than this one.
Here's the audio of today's news conference he had with Rep. John Kline.
The next poll in this race can't come fast enough.
Posted at 5:43 PM on October 26, 2006
by Bob Collins
I know we've reached the "humor impaired" part of the political season, but this Web site has made a mix of negative campaign ads -- real and imagined.
(h/t Ben Tesch)
Posted at 6:46 PM on October 26, 2006
by Tom Scheck
The flap between Republican Governor Tim Pawlenty and DFLer Mike Hatch leads the digest today. Yesterday the argument was over the airwaves and focused on who's tougher on immigration. Today they argue about the ads.
WCCO-TV's Pat Kessler reality checks Pawlenty's health care premiums ad.
Speaking of transportation, the Transportation Amendment stays on the ballot.
MPR has a story on how the Iraq war is dominating the U.S. Senate race between Republican Congressman Mark Kennedy, DFLer Amy Klobuchar and I-P candidate Robert Fitzgerald.
Kennedy also wants one of the final debates to focus on national security.
His ad also gets written up in "The Fix" for his ad on the war.
Kennedy goes down to Jackson.
ECM Publishing endorses Klobuchar.
Klobuchar visits the north side.
Barack Obama will hold a rally in Rochester on Monday for Klobuchar and 1st District DFL candidate Tim Walz.
First Lady Laura Bush was in Minnesota to hold events for Gil Gutknecht, who is running against Walz, and for Michele Bachmann who is running for Congress in the 6th. MPR, KSTP and the Pi Press have stories.
The Mankato Free Press has a story saying the Ag Sec'y says farmers need Gutknecht. Walz says he'd sit on AG committee.
Walz stumps in Maple River.
Bloomberg reports that Rochester TV stations have been hit with an ad tsunami because of the competitive race down there.
Fox News has has a story on microtargeting in the 1st.
ECM Publishers endorse Wetterling.
AP says it's campaign time for cabinet officials (mentions Johanns visit to MN)
Here comes another one. The Sec'y of the Interior will be in the state on Friday.
Congressman Peterson calls his Iraq war vote a mistake.
The Strib profiles the Secretary of State race.
Finally, CNET lists the worst political site (sorry, it's not Polinaut).
Posted at 9:04 PM on October 26, 2006
by Bob Collins
Following up on the post regarding Mark Kennedy's strategy to make Iraq the centerpiece of his campaign....
Someone should tell the Kennedy Web folks.
Under the "Mark's plan" section of the Web site, Iraq is down at the next to last issue...right next to 'reforming Washington.'
Higher up on the list are: agriculture, energy, environment, values, health care, immigration, jobs, outdoors (hey is that picture.... oh, never mind), Social Security, and traffic congestion.
None of those are insignificant issues, of course.... but if the congressman is making his stand on the Iraq issue -- and he is -- we look for it at least leap-frog over heavy traffic and good fishing.
Here's where the Senate race stands: It's now a referendum on Iraq. Let the campaign begin!
When I started Polinaut, we really wanted to shed some light on the blogosphere and the people in it. I'm glad we did, because everybody I've met, everybody I've read, has made for a very entertaining election season.
We get wrapped up in politics a lot. We think it's life and death for us in the same way the Twins losing the playoffs is. Sometimes, it's just a game. But that doesn't stop us from projecting as 'evil' those with whom we politically disagree. We should catch ourselves doing that in the heat of the campaign because when all is said and done, we're supposed to be united and when this election season is over, if we still view others as 'evil,' then nothing good can come of it, regardless of who wins the election.
The next person I meet in the blogosphere who actually is a first class jerk personally, will be the first one.
That's a long-winded way of saying it would be good if we can think good thoughts for others during this "hair-trigger" stage of the campaign... even those with whom you may disagree politically.