Thursday, July 27, 2006


This disease appears to be becoming pandemic among Republican senate challengers, at least in "blue" states. Michael Steele's infection has gone public through his sloppy indiscretions, but his counterpart in Minnesota, Mark Kennedy, is actively injecting his succumbings into his latest campaign ad:

Here's the first campaign commercial from Representative Mark Kennedy, Republican candidate for Senate in Minnesota. You might notice it doesn't use a certain word. It starts with an R ...

Instead, the ad focuses entirely on Kennedy's family. For instance, here're his kids: "Dad likes to help people. He's principled, independent, just not much of a party guy. I meant he doesn't do whatever the party says to."
It goes without saying that the above is cowardly. But it's also futile, and stupidly so. It's a blanket invitation to Democrat Amy Klobuchar to make President Bush and the GOP and all the Donk lies and propaganda about them the central focus of the campaign and stake Kennedy to them like an anthill. Yeah, she'd do that anyway, but by implicitly conceding her point it starts him out on the defensive, guarantees he'll have a more difficult time talking about the issues he wants front and center, and ensures that Klobuchar will be unlikely to have to defend the fever swamp excesses that are the raving weakness of her party and candidacy.

Kennedy even has a "deer in the headlights" expression on his face in his ad. Which is dismayingly appropo for a campaign that is now marked by a pre-emptive flight to the tall grass that will never get him to the finish line.