Monday, October 24, 2005

Farnsworth is Dead On; This Year is Way to Negative

We saw a good bit of negative attacks shot back-and-forth during our Republican primary earlier this year. While the statewide candidates went after each other the negative sentiment seemed much worse in the House of Delegate contests. I think I heard the words liar and RINO more in the first six months of my life then all the previous years of my existence. Well, Prof Farnsworth over at Mary Washington had this piece in the Washington Post today that I have to agree with, at least in general principle. Farnsworth, with a little bit of a lefty slant, seems to accurately portray the attacks both Kaine and Kilgore seem to be lobbing at one another on a pretty consistent basis. He also goes into the roadblocks that will most likely exist next session because of the tone of politics in Virginia lately. What Fransworth does not disucss though is how this same problem seems to be taking place in the Lt Governor race. Neither candidate seems to be running a positive ad, at least not where I live, but instead chooses to tell us why the opponent is not good for Virginia. This really upsets me as a voter and as a political operative. I am tired of politicians only telling me whats wrong with someone or an issue and never telling me why I should vote for them and their ideas. I will take these constant attacks to mean that neither Lt Governor candidate has any new ideas, or frankly any real class, and most likely leave the second line on my ballot blank. That of course pains me because I know that Sen Bolling has some good ideas, but it would seem his political consultants and those around him have steered his campaign in a nasty direction. And as my Platoon Sergeant always said, "The actions of those you choose to seek advice from will always reflect back upon you". In the AG race I have only seen an ad from Bob McDonnell, and not Creigh Deeds. McDonnell does a wonderful job of telling the voters why he should be elected and I must say I will proudly pull the lever for him on Election Day. Deeds I am sure has ads up (If you have any links or descriptions please place them in the comments section), but I have not seen them. On his website his does have an excellent piece on why you should vote for him. I am sure his ads run along the same lines. The actions of the candidates in this contest have constantly re-enforced my feeling that the AG race holds the best candidates on both statewide tickets. Though I think our top guy runs about even with McDonnell while Kaine falls vastly short of the character shown by Creigh Deeds. In closing, I am getting tired of this discourse we have in Virginia. It would be nice to return to the civility of past Governor elections. But, I am afraid that will never happen with the political culture that has seemed to take over our entire country.

13 Comments:

At 10/24/2005 04:23:00 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

"Though I think our top guy runs about even with McDonnell while Kaine falls vastly short of the character shown by Creigh Deeds."

Are you joking? How can you possibly compare the juvenile scorched earth campaign Kilgore has been running to McDonnell (who's kept it laudably positive)? No matter what side you are on, Kilgore has far and away led the negativity charge, and led it proudly, from day one of this camapign. Kaine hasn't done much better when he hits back with negatives, but how could anyone possibly claim that Kilgore has been "about" as civil as McDonnell?

You had me until you got to this absurdly partisanthink conclusion.

 
At 10/24/2005 04:47:00 PM, Blogger MR JMS said...

I said their individual character. Civility towards your political opponent is only a piece of that. While Kilgore has been quit negative at least his attacks are based on fact unlike Mr. Kaine.

 
At 10/24/2005 05:06:00 PM, Blogger Not Larry Sabato said...

So you are voting Kilgore-McDonnell with LG blank?

 
At 10/24/2005 06:31:00 PM, Anonymous S Pi said...

Going to have to ditto anonymous above. The "Hitler" ads as they have become to be known can be charaterized as nothing if not negative, regardless of one's position on the death penalty. The same can be said for that stop-motion animated ad showing Kaine eating things.

 
At 10/24/2005 06:54:00 PM, Blogger MR JMS said...

No. I will vote for Sen. Bolling at the end of the day. I just hope for so much more out of him and Kilgore.

 
At 10/24/2005 06:56:00 PM, Blogger Not Larry Sabato said...

Why the flip flopping? A few minutes ago you were likely leaving your ballot blank

 
At 10/24/2005 07:31:00 PM, Blogger MR JMS said...

Called letting off steam. Not flip flopping. I may very well leave the line blank if I don't see some sort of change out of either candidate.

 
At 10/24/2005 07:40:00 PM, Blogger Not Larry Sabato said...

What do we need to make you a Kilgore/Byrne/McDonnell voter?

 
At 10/24/2005 10:05:00 PM, Blogger MR JMS said...

I will NEVER vote for Leslie Byrne. Some of us still remember when she was our Congresswoman. If only we had finished her off in 1994.

 
At 10/25/2005 02:28:00 AM, Blogger Not Larry Sabato said...

Go with the blank plan. :)

 
At 10/25/2005 10:50:00 AM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

"I said their individual character. Civility towards your political opponent is only a piece of that. While Kilgore has been quit negative at least his attacks are based on fact unlike Mr. Kaine."

:rolleyes:

Look. I KNOW you aren't that stupid. You know that most of us aren't that stupid. BOTH candidates have been smearing each other. Both have used extensive mistruths. And frankly, no one could possibly make a sensible argument that Kaine has been more deceptive and more negative than Kilgore. To rail against the low quality of the discourse and then give Kilgore a pass basically undermines your entire purported "principles" completely. What you are really saying is simply that complaining about negative campaigning is a good way to hurt people you oppose, but perfectly ok for candidates you support. Therefore, the obvious conclusion is that there should be and will be even more negative campaigning: a virtual ENDORSEMENT of it from you, the guy claiming that it cheapens our discourse.

Time to pick whether partisanship or principle is more important to you.

 
At 10/25/2005 03:24:00 PM, Blogger MR JMS said...

Just my opinion buddy. Like I said I don't think Kilgore has been as bad and unfortunately it seems that many of our elections have come down to the "this guy isn't as bad as the other guy" scenario. Last years Prez election is a perfect example when Bush walked into November with a 47% approval rating and the GOP generic even lower. But, we pummeled the Dems simply because we were the lesser of the two evils.

 
At 10/26/2005 12:27:00 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

"Like I said I don't think Kilgore has been as bad"

And I think that basically disqualifies anyone's opinion right off the bat. Kilgore went negative first. He's been far more negative as a percentage of his media: not just in tv and radio but also in public appearances, which by and large are focused around attacking Kaine rather than talking about himself or his plans.

But that's not even the question. You actually compared him to _McDonnell_ in terms of how positive he's been. That's absurd.

 

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