Monday, November 06, 2006

Vote Democrat on November 7!

They’re at it again. In the latest renewal of their famed 72-hour “Get Out the Vote” strategy, Republican politicians are again making wild, irresponsible and unethical attacks on Democrats in the final hours of the campaign when it’s too late to rebut the claims and too late to expose their tactics. They’ll lie about anything and hope you, the voters, will fall for it.

While the Oklahoma Democratic Party is sending out positive postcards which encourage voters to cast their ballots for Oklahoma’s top-notch slate of Democratic statewide candidates, the Oklahoma Republican Party and their surrogates are mailing out distortions and pulling dirty tricks to fool the unsuspecting. Again this year, Oklahoma Republican political operatives are launching eleventh-hour “smear and fear” campaigns to turn out their base and divide the electorate. That’s how they’ve been able to win elections for several years, and it’s time each Oklahoman gets wise to their cynical schemes and says, “No More.”

Now, the Republican sleaze-merchants are perpetrating their frauds on our Oklahoma newspapers with distorted, unethical advertising. David Stringer, Publisher of The Norman Transcript, is also President of the Oklahoma Press Association and upcoming speaker for the Oklahoma Business Ethics Consortium seminar on Media Credibility, Ethics and the Threat to Democracy. Yet, even his newspaper has been used by unscrupulous, anonymous Republican operatives who have smeared Democratic District 45 House candidate Wallace Collins in his race against Republican incumbent Thad Balkman.

Somebody (again, they won’t identify themselves publicly so can’t tell you their names) has placed two personal attack ads in the Transcript in the waning days of the campaign to attack Mr. Collins. This shadow group can’t be held accountable, because they won’t say who they are, and chances are, they are not registered with the State Ethics Commission, as required by law. They are skirting the law and hoping readers won’t notice or care. The candidate these sleazy ads support isn’t talking, either. And he certainly isn’t taking responsibility. No, Balkman looks the other way and lets the sleaze merchants do his dirty work. It’s the Karl Rove/Radical Republican way…and it’s despicable.

A Texas-based shadow group is launching similar attacks on Insurance Commissioner Kim Holland, without complying with Oklahoma law. The Republican State Leadership Committee is spending hundreds of thousands of dollars to elect Republicans across the state, but they’re not complying with the Ethics laws by failing to disclose who is supporting which candidate. No wonder Republicans in the legislature opposed toughening Oklahoma’s campaign ethics laws and have consistently voted against bills that would require candidates to be held responsible for their lies. There is nothing they won’t lie about to gain power and nothing they won’t do to keep it.

Oklahoma deserves better. The Oklahoma Democratic Party urges every Oklahoman to watch out for the Republican dirty tricks and reject their un-Oklahoma ways. Oklahoma Democrats are not perfect, but our candidates are doing everything they can to fight to the finish with honor and conviction. Today’s Oklahoma Democrats believe in responsibility and accountability, and as Chair of the Oklahoma Democratic Party I do not tolerate lies, deceptions and distortions. Thankfully, our candidates prefer to talk about the real issues affecting Oklahoma families and how a vote for a Democrat is a vote for proudly moving Oklahoma forward through smart policies and honest leadership.

I call on our candidates to do as good Democrats do – work hard and play by the rules. And, I respectfully ask the voters of Oklahoma to say “No More” to the sleazy politics of distortion and personal destruction pushed by the Republican Party by casting their votes for Democrats on November 7th.

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