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Great voter turnout — not such great campaigns

November 7, 2014
Estherville News

Congratulations need to go to our local candidates for a clean campaign. The Emmet County supervisor race was a model for how an ethical campaign should be conducted.

Congratulations should go to the voters as well. For a non-Presidential election, Emmet County had a great voter turnout. And for that, everyone who voted should be congratulated.

With a thousand absentee ballots coming in before election day, all signs were that turnout would be heavy.

It showed that voters cared and wanted to do the right thing.

We only wish we could say the same of all the candidates.

Severely negative campaigning by the state Democratic party targeted Dist. 7 Tedd Gassman with not even the slightest mention of Gassman's opponent, Dave Grussing. Only in the final days did state party direct mailings reveal that Grussing was Gassman's opponent. By then, the state Democratic party had spent an enormous amount of money on direct mailing to run down Gassman. State Democrats seemed to forget a couple cardinal rules. Negative name ID is still name ID. They provided Gassman plenty of that. Another fact is that there are a substantial people who vote against negative campaigning - they simply don't like someone telling them what to think and how to vote.

The Democrats weren't alone in political malapropisms.

Republican Senate candidate Joni Ernst made two treks to Estherville to tell voters that Sen. Tom Harkin, who chose not to run again, had been in office too long - 30 years. She also touted her military record over that of her opponent, Bruce Braley. Perhaps Joni should have done a little research - or at least stopped to think a little bit - to realize that fellow Republican Sen. Charles Grassley has been in the Senate for 34 years while fellow Republican Rep. Steve King did not serve in the military while his opponent, Jim Mower, did.

Someone once said that political candidates count on voter amnesia - that voters can't remember beyond the last election.

This election, it seemed like some candidates didn't believe voters can think at all.



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