Friday, October 29, 2010

Will last minute attack on catholics and evangelicals by DFL Party and Melendez cost DFLers' elections?

This not so subtle attack on Catholics and evangelicals by the DFL party through a series of post cards mailed out in a local state Senate district may cost DFL'ers in the elections Tuesday. The problem was only compounded by DFL party chair Brian Melendez who didn't apologize for the postcards but, in fact, defended them saying they were good ads.

His response evidences not only arrogance and an anti-Catholic and evangelical Christian bias but political tone deafness.

It's reported that DFL Catholic elected officials are livid by their party's actions. They are facing tight, tough local, legislative races which could turn on a controversy ad like this.

The fact that Dayton and his family have given $900,000 to the DFL Party and Tom Emmer who is Catholic could mean the controversy could spill over to the tight governor's race.

I came across this interview with Jeff Blodgett who talked about the impact last minute political blunders can have. Blodgett was the campaign manager for Paul Wellstone in 1990 when Rudy Boschwitz sent out a letter to Jewish leaders calling for their support over the less observant Paul Wellstone. It upset many non-Jewish voters. Some say it impacted the outcome of the election. Here's what Blodgett said about last minute blunders.
"Rule No. 1 in politics," said Blodgett, "is don't do something that becomes an issue itself."

If it's so basic, why does the rule seem to be violated so frequently?

"In a campaign, you have to be careful because you can end up losing perspective," said Blodgett.

At some point in a campaign, politics gets personal, and the personal gets emotional. Your candidate is good. The other candidate is evil.

"It's a big mistake when one campaign ends up hating the other campaign," Blodgett said.
We'll see what the political impact of this attack on catholics and evangelicals is Tuesday.

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