Election Day is just a few days away and political campaigns like those of Nevada senatorial hopeful Sharron Angle are pulling out their last ads. In her highly contested race with incumbent Democratic Sen. Harry Reid, Angle has pulled out most of the stops to make him look bad. But after being called “evil,” a “moron,” and a “b***h” by “The View” co-host Joy Behar last week, Angle’s campaign took the high road and, instead of resorting to over-the-top posturing and rhetoric, sent the comedian flowers. But the high road hasn’t been the avenue of choice for Angle in this campaign. Flowers aside, Angle’s campaign this week accused the Harry Reid camp of attempting to steal the election…
As is seen with most political posturing, Angle and staff do not back their claim with credible evidence. Instead, in an e-mail sent out by Angle’s campaign lawyer, Cleta Mitchell, she talked about what could happen and wrote that Harry Read and “the Democrats and their cronies” were attempting to “manipulate” the vote by providing food and drink at polling stations, which Mitchell maintains is a clear violation of Nevada’s voting laws. Mitchell notes that it constitutes bribing.
But is it? Providing food and drink at polling places is customary in many states. Like a continental breakfast at a hotel, it is offered gratis, to be taken by the voters or not.
Mitchell refers to the practice as an “ACORN-style” tactic and that everything that Sharron Angle has worked for could be destroyed by “dirty tricks and criminal acts.”
Over coffee and donuts?
Of course, Mitchell does cite some problematic rumors of Starbuck’s gift cards and other enticements that are rumored to be given out to people to vote Democratic. However, whether or not those voters will even vote Democratic once they’re at the polling booths, which is the stated intent, is uncertain. But attempting to influence the vote would indeed be a violation of the law.
If the rumors are even true.
But most disturbing was Mitchell’s direct statement that Harry Reid was attempting to “steal” the election. “Please send an urgent contribution so our work will not be in vain,” Mitchell wrote. “We’re going to win this race as long as we don’t let Harry Reid steal it. Can you help us today?”
And, yes, the accusations and insinuations, playing on the fears of voting fraud, were part of a donation drive e-mail.
But accusing Sen. Reid of stealing the election to stir up fear to get donations and encourage Republicans to vote is only the latest low road tactic used by the Angle campaign. She has had several ads that blatantly portray Hispanics, especially illegal immigrant Hispanics, as ominous and clearly intent on taking American jobs and funds for education. This plays upon the fear of joblessness, a prevalent fear in Nevada (since the state holds the highest unemployment percentage in the nation — 14.4 percent), and of taxes going toward higher education costs, not to mention prejudicial fears against the unknown, the outsider, and the alien.
It was just such a political ad that Joy Behar took exception to on “The View,” calling Sharron Angle out on the ad’s overt racism, saying, “I’d like to see her (Angle) do this ad in the South Bronx. Come here, b***h. Come to New York and do it.”
It was that contemptuous outburst that prompted Angle’s camp to send the flowers, twisting the incident to thank Behar for helping them raise over a hundred thousand in donations.
But Angle has shown herself to be very much a player on racial and stereotypical fears. She was called out by reporters on some statements she made that cities in the United States were already under sharia law (Muslim religious law) and not following constitutional law anymore. She later backed away from her statements when confronted with proof that one of the “cities” wasn’t anything more than a few buildings and the mayor of Dearborn, Mich., went on national television to refute that ridiculous claim that his city was under sharia law.
Taking the high road in her U. S. Senate seat has not been Angle’s preferred method of getting to Washington, but she might get there anyway. Playing on the ignorance and fears of Nevada voters seems to have hit a responsive. According to the Real Clear Politics average of polls, Angle has jumped out to a 4 percent lead over Harry Reid going into the weekend before Election Day.
Harry Reid will not be able to “steal” the midterm election from Sharron Angle if she can scare enough people into voting for her on Nov. 2.