The American public has an amazingly low opinion of Congress. Many reasons are giving ranging from they get nothing done to they do too much. What is most worrisome, however, is the low regard for Congressional members’ personal integrity. The public views that all these members are for sale and their words cannot be trusted. Time for a change?
On May 18, Pennsylvania voters will get a chance to choose between 5 term, 80 year old Arlen Specter and two term Representative, 57 year old Joe Sestak. Specter has had a storied career, mostly as a Republican, and Sestak has had a distinguished Naval career (graduated second in his class at the Naval Academy) rising to the rank of a 3 star Admiral. Both face the possibility of running in the general election against a conservative, friend of big business republican who polls say may beat either of them.
What a time to campaign over issues that will impact Pennsylvanians as means of separating ones candidacy from the intrenched and disliked politicians. No brainer, right?
Unfortunately no. Specter has used two separate TV spots to go negative. The first impugned Sestak’s military career and the second deals with the relatively low pay of Sestak’s campaign staff. What has these claims have to do with (1) how effective Specter might be, if elected, in the next 6 years? (2) How would these claims inform about how Sestak might be, if elected, during the next 6 years?
Specter’s intent is clear. Focus the light away from him and the limited potential he can be effective in the next 6 years.
Voters do not like negative adds, especially when they are not related to any legislative issue. I wonder whether voters will recognize the evil ways of Karl Rove and Lee Atwater behind this style of negative campaigning?