Monday, October 23, 2006

Larry Grant's recent ad

Even though I'm not in Larry Grant's district, I've been following his campaign with some interest. As far as I can tell, his opponent, Bill Sali, is barely supported by his own party. It's interesting to me, that in Idaho, the Idaho Republican Party would have put up such a weak opponent.

Just from working for Jerry Brady, I heard that the latest poll numbers were 42 Grant (D) and 44 Sali (R)


Blake Roberts said...


While it may be true (I have no idea if it is) that he "doesn't have one ounce empathy in his whole fricking body," I don't think I would vote for Grant after an ad like that. That isn't to say that I would vote for Sali, if he truly isn't a good choice I would probably try to find a third party candidate, but I just can't stand mud slinging. It reminds me too much of my mission, where so many thought that the way to save me from "the horrors of the Mormon cult" was to be as insulting as possible, in hopes I would see the light.

Any candidate, of any party, who feels that it is in their best interest to use their campaign funds to tear down their opponent, rather then informing the voters on their own views, qualifications, and strengths, doesn't deserve to win. If the ad came from an outside source, I would hope Grant would have the integrity to denounce it.

Anonymous said...

Oh c'mon Blake,

Don't you think you're over-reacting a little? Let me set the context for you.

Bill Sali has been lobbing Rovian negative ads at Grant for the past two weeks from money he received from a worried RNC.

What is Grant supposed to do? Not respond? Well, he did respond. Not only did he respond, but he responded with quotes from Republicans who sit on the Idaho Legislature. All the quotes from the people in the ad have had a direct personal and professional relationship with Sali.

I mean, it says something big when people from the top brass of ones own party speak out against you.

The best quote is the one by Bruce Newcomb, the Speaker.

Blake Roberts said...

Honestly, I don't think I'm over reacting.

I do think that Grant shouldn't have responded. If Sali and the RNC are running a smear campaign, Grant should take the higher road. What does his ad prove? That he will stoop just as low to win an election as they will.

Matt Salmon was the Republican running for governor in Arizona, he was leading in the polls until he started running smear ads against the democrat (who had started it long before). Suddenly, the guy who was running on a platform of character, experience, family, and ethics became just another politician, and he lost the election because of it.

It does say something when party members have said those type of things (and I did get a good laugh out of them), but dragging out quotes from people who don't like your opponent is no way to prove you are a better choice.

Anonymous said...

Well, I'm honestly torn on the idea of negative campaigning.

I don't know what Arizona is like, but as you well know, Idaho is a difficult demographic for Democrats. Grant, like many other Democrats in this state, have been running issue oriented campaigns.

Which, is more than you can say for the Republicans, who have sat back and have tried to say and do nothing at all. Sali is only a slight exception, he's had to do some work to convince his own party.

Anyway, in a state that already has a great animosity towards Democrats, showing less involved Republicans that the leaders of their own party do not like Sali is saying a great deal in Idaho.

Let me try to sum up my point. Idaho Republicans are VERY likely to vote a straight ticket. Grant's ad is negative, but it proves the point that top Idaho Republicans will not be supporting Bill Sali, who is also a Republican. This ad will make straight ticket Republicans think twice... I hope.

Chaucer Arafat said...

totally unrelated info, but i think some of you may find this interesting:

An article from Salon about "the reddest" place in America

Chaucer Arafat said...

ah...i hadn't read the whole article before i posted this. I noticed halfway through that Dawn was interviewed, so this is probably old hat to all of you...or i stole someone's thunder for a prospective post. [shrugs..]

Anonymous said...

Here's an article that points out how much money Sali is getting from outside sources:

Jessica said...

I think the ad is very beneficial for Idaho voters. I think voters should know what Sali's fellow Republicans have said about him. If the tables were turned and this was an ad about what Democrats think of Grant, I would say the same thing. What Sali has done has been dispicable and people need to know his own party doesn't like him.

Cameron said...

This is the problem with negative advertising. Most of the time they're not right.

Cameron said...


The article you posted brings up two interesting points. The first is illustrated by these quotes from the article:

"We’re not doing it," Grant’s spokesman Don Rosebrock said. "We have no idea who’s doing it. And that’s the truth."

Grant’s campaign ad recycles anti-Sali quotes from Republicans Bruce Newcomb, Dolores Crow and Sheila Sorensen. Newcomb and Crow are legislators, and Sorenson lost to Sali in the May primary election.

"So if you’re a Republican and you want to vote for Larry Grant, you’re in good company," the voice-over says.

If that implies any of those three have endorsed Grant, that’s not true. Even Sorensen, who lost to Sali in a messy primary, hasn’t gone that far.

Not only is it a negative ad, it apparently is also innacurate.

The next point the article brings up is that of funding, specifically funding from out of state sources.

There is a discernable sense of distrust in Idaho when sources from outside of the state fund campaigns here. I don't think the distrust is not warranted, but with the realities of present politics it is impossible to find an issue or candidate that is not funded in some way by someone else (Jim Hansen being a very admirable exception). Even the Grant ad is apparently funded by outside sources. Prop 1 and Prop 2 are both heavily funded by out of staters. Should we vote no on both of those because of this?

The reality is that national politics now is more about party than about representation. That means that Reps and Dems and their activist groups around the country are going to spend money for whichever candidate supports their party, regardless from what state the candidate hails.

Anonymous said...


Great points. Really, great analysis.

I don't know if I'd go so far as to call Grant's ad "inaccurate". Perhaps this is just semantics, but I would call Grant's ad an assumption.

The ad causes someone to believe that those Republican leaders quoted in Grant's ad will be voting for Grant.

To date, only Crow has disputed Grant's ad, has anyone else? Not that it takes more than one, but I'm curious to know if anyone else who was quoted has had a problem with the ad.

Your second point about money is unfortunately too true.

The party system has the appearance of circumventing state representation on the federal level if seen from a certain point of view.

The parties almost appear to have become "states" unto themselves, representing the interests of their party instead of the interests of their state.

Am I being too cynical?

Ron Grant said...

I see on Adam's blog this thread is being used as persuasive evidence for Democrats to stay home and not vote on Tuesday.

I can't speak for my father's campaign, or even for my father, but I know when we have talked, we have agreed on the following:

There is a vision of America that is bigger than any of us. And for those of you who have yet to vote, when you do, voting for your vision is the only thing that matters.

This republic will endure so long as we vote. Parties, and political tactics, will come and go. And someday in the future discussions about whether negative ads work or are damaging will be academic.

Voting will not.

Vote Republican, Vote Democratic, Vote Independent, Vote Write-in for Yourself (if you can) -- but do vote.