Pop quiz, everyone! It's September, 2010, and the midterm elections loom in the distance. A candidate running for the House of Representatives cuts an ad, obliquely fearmongering about undocumented immigrants and alleging that "illegal immigration" is "good business" for his opponent. Do you think you know the party affiliations of the purveyor and the target of this campaign ad? Well, guess again:
It isn't every day that Democrats target Latino challengers with nasty anti-immigrant ads, but these are apparently desperate times for certain embattled Dems.
Check out this remarkably vicious new ad from Blue Dog Dem Walt Minnick of Idaho, claiming that illegal immigration is "good business" for his Republican challenger, Raul Labrador,
That's from Greg Sargent, who says, "I'm told that Labrador is short on funds, and that Republicans think this is a tough race for them because Minnick's record is hard to attack, because he's bucked his party on many major issues. Yet Minnick apparently sees the need to run an ad that stinks of fear and desperation. Quite a specimen."
Well, maybe. But let's add some context here: Minnick is the only Democrat in the land who has earned an endorsement from the Tea Party Express. So it's not entirely surprising that we see him here, brandishing some of the nativism for which that movement is known.
As for Labrador, if we leave ideology and party platform aside for a moment and cut right to the personal, I have to say, the guy really is more sinned against than sinning, isn't he? Let's recall that during the primary season, Labrador had to endure some serious nonsense from his Palinista opponent, Vaughn Ward, who was apparently of the mind that Labrador's native Puerto Rico was not a part of America. When Labrador corrected Ward, pointing out that Puerto Rico was a United States territory, Ward shot back, "I really don't care what it is, it doesn't matter." Voters rightly dispatched Ward at their first opportunity.