The Free Press, Mankato, MN

Election 2012

October 31, 2012

Campaign notebook: lies, damned lies and footnotes


Monson later forwarded a Twitter message sent in April by New Ulm Journal reporter Josh Moniz that stated Quist said “he supports Ryan budget plan, except wants debt ended n 6 years.” Moniz has since said that Quist later specifically stated he would not cut Medicare, a pledge Quist has made repeatedly throughout the campaign.

Something afoot?

In a press conference Friday, Quist called the flier “a desperate last-minute smear attack.” And he said that “Tim Walz has launched an entirely false attack ... ”

But hold on a minute. Wasn’t it the DFL that sent the mailer? No, Quist said, it was Walz, hiding behind the DFL so he wouldn’t be criticized for negative and spurious campaigning.

Quist noted that Walz gave the DFL thousands of dollars earlier this month and that the money must have been intended to finance the mailing.

Any proof?

“All I’m doing is connecting the dots,” Quist said. “And the connection is quite obvious.”

It’s not entirely obvious because campaigns can contract with their party for a variety of services, including field work, voter lists, polling information and ... mailings.

Monson said she was unsure what the Walz campaign’s payment was for and doubted she’d have time to check. The Walz campaign, given an opportunity to deny Quist’s charge that the mailer was a Walz attack in DFL clothing, referred all questions to the DFL.

The other footnote drops

Just hours after Quist was expressing outrage about the flier claiming he would undermine Medicare, a TV ad was airing on KEYC comparing Walz to a color-changing lizard and stating that Walz “wants to make major cuts to Social Security and Medicare.”

There was no doubt about the sponsor of the ad, which ended with: “I’m Allen Quist. Martha and I approve this message.”

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Election 2012