Saturday, March 17, 2007

Fletcher ad gives Democrats another chance to show their hypocrisy

The first television ad of Gov. Fletcher's re-election campaign has been on the air for about five days now. It's playing to critical acclaim and to howls of protest from both the Northup camp and the liberal Democrats, which means it must be doing something right.

The responses from the other sides have been fun to watch. Northup's spin machine issued a press release attacking the claims of accomplishment in the latter portion of the ad, but the funny thing is the accomplishments in the ad were listed in only general terms which are true. It was a stretch for Northup's people to challenge the assertions in the ad, but challenge they did because it seems the only thing Northup can do is attack Fletcher since she has no platform of her own.

The Democrat meltdown on the loony left blogs was predictable, but obviously the ad struck a nerve with some of the state's leading liberals.

Courier-journal editor David Hawpe scrapped whatever he planned to write about for his Wednesday, March 14 semi-weekly column and rushed into print with a piece attacking the ad and Fletcher. Relying on the multitude of press clippings and leaks of prosecution evidence and the unsubstantiated claims made in the grand jury's final report, Hawpe scoffed at the notion that Fletcher was bullied by Greg Stumbo during the investigation and instead claims that Fletcher himself was the bully.

How nice it would be if we could only get one substantiated, verifiable example of a protected merit system employee being fired for political reasons. But to date not one shred of evidence that this ever happened has been made public.

While Hawpe's public spleen-venting was amusing, what has been even more entertaining is watching the Democrats once again prove what hypocrites they are.

We harken back to the rift between the Bruce Lunsford/Greg Stumbo ticket and several of Kentucky's labor union leaders. When some of those leaders stated that Stumbo had threatened them, the anti-Lunsford Democrats howled like dogs wailing at a passing ambulance. They thought this was absolutely terrible that Stumbo might use his position to harass, intimidate and threaten these folks. Some even wanted to stretch the bounds of credibility and turn those political threats into physical ones and demand law enforcement step in. (We guess they took those "stabbed in the back" comments literally.)

But that's par for the course. Anyone who has dealt with Stumbo knows that bullying and intimidation are his strong points. He uses them as political weapons the way Ann Coulter uses words to slice liberals into little chunks of spoiled meat. Stumbo has a long record of strong-arm tactics. Ask Travis Fritsch, the woman who bore an out-of-wedlock child with Stumbo. When Ms. Fritsch had the audacity to go to court to demand the back child support that legally belonged to her and her son, Stumbo retaliated by filing suit against her, claiming that her child support claims were meant to harm him politically.

So why are the Democrats, who have seen how Stumbo reacts when challenged by the likes of Charles Wells and Eddie Bowling and Travis Fritsch, suddenly aghast at the notion that Stumbo bullied Fletcher during the merit system investigation? Why does the visual image of schoolyard urchins (one of whom just might be a young Greg Stumbo, Fletcher's campaign manager noted with a figurative wink and nod) trouble them so?

During the investigation, Stumbo was a bully and he led a pack of bullies. Only this group of bullies was armed with subpoena power.

Just two weeks ago, many Democrats were up in arms over Stumbo's bullying tactics. Yet when presented dramatic visual imagery of it in the form of a campaign ad, they chafe at the inference.

Not only does the Fletcher ad help define Fletcher as a victim in the merit system investigation, it helps expose the Democrats (once again) as the hypocrites they are. That's a two-fer; an added bonus in our book.

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