Republican US Senate Candidate Linda McMahon has her Democratic opponent on the ropes, revealing him to be a petulant campaigner who is focused on running desperation-initiated negative ads that are easy for McMahon to rebut.
While McMahon's ads focus on Democrat Chris Murphy's record, which frankly, isn't all that hot, his ads in return represent the worst type of personal attacks against McMahon.
Obviously Murphy has to go negative against McMahon because he can't go positive about himself.
But wait, the news for Murphy is getting worse. As if he didn't have enough to worry about, one of the last hopes of the Democratic campaign – a splintered GOP vote – is about to fly out the window, with McMahon hosting a unity rally in Groton on October 3.
Republicans and other voters who support McMahon are getting together at 5 p.m., at the Mystic Marriott in Groton to show the world that McMahon is the GOP candidate, everyone understands that and they are supporting here against all comers. The unity rally will showcase her widespread support within the GOP, and is open to independent voters and cross-over Democrats as well.
Just the fact that the McMahon campaign can sponsor such an event spells trouble with a capital T for her opponent.
Among the many reasons that McMahon's event is such bad news for Murphy is the scheduled attendance by retired Army Colonel, Vietnam Veteran, and former 2nd District Congressman Rob Simmons, who ran against McMahon in 2010.
Murphy is trailing McMahon in legitimate polls – not the media generated propaganda that is over-sampling Democrats by double digits just to keep the ad money flowing into their "news" organizations – and he is suffering from significant negative image issues. Thus an appearance by Simmons at a unity event anywhere in the 2nd Congressional District is sure to draw significant positive attention to McMahon's campaign and her willingness to mend fences.
Simmons, who still maintains a huge support base among 2nd District voters now is the Chairman of the Board of Directors for the Yankee Institute for Public Policy and in accordance with that organization's policy is prohibited from endorsing political candidates. Nonetheless, Simmons can appear at political events, particularly if he has an opportunity to talk about the issues of the day, which he intends to do on October third.
Reached earlier this week, Simmons said he will be speaking on the failures of the US Senate as it is now configured. "There is no budget, no forward motion and grotesque disclosures of national security information," he said.
The prevailing atmosphere of partisanship in the Senate "lies at the feet of the Democrats," Simmons said. "The Democratic leadership has failed miserably," he added, noting that his experience as a Senate staffer in the 1980s showed him the value of bipartisanship when possible.
Simmons served on the Senate Intelligence Committee working for Senator John H. Chafee (R-Rhode Island) and was named Staff Director of the committee by Chairman Barry Goldwater (R-Arizona) – a position he held until from 1981 until 1985. But during that time he also saw successful efforts by the Republicans and Democratic senators such as Daniel Patrick Moynihan (D- NY) to find common ground on national issues.
While he worked for some of the most noteworthy national Republicans of that time, and developed his personal positions on the free market in those days, he also saw a fair share of bipartisanship, which he said is sorely missing now. "It is my experience that Republicans and Democrats can work together," he said.
Simmons put the blame for the current gridlock in Washington squarely on the shoulders of Democratic Senate Majority leader Harry Reid. Just this summer Reid made headlines by accusing Republican presidential candidate Mitt Romney of not paying any income taxes in the past decade.
That statement was disproved virtually immediately but Reid was spared a slander suit because he used the immunity granted to members of the Senate when they are speaking on the Senate floor to protect him.
When Romney released his 2011 income tax returns last week his opponents changed their tunes, saying he paid either too much or too little in taxes and charitable donations.
In addition to appearing at the McMahon unity event in the Mystic Marriott next week, Simmons also has spoken about her campaign in two recent radio appearances and is scheduled for WFSBs Face the State show on Channel 3 at 11 a.m., where he faced off against Susan Bysiewicz. Face the State, hosted by Dennis House, was taped Thursday night and by all accounts is well worth watching.
Also, in a mock debate on the Lee Elci morning radio show two weeks ago, Simmons responded to a statement from his opponent concerning an influx of more than $300,000 to the Murphy campaign from national Democrats by asking "What's he going to do with it? Pay his mortgage?"
Murphy has come under sustained fire from the McMahon campaign on financial issues and how they relate to his time term in office as a Congressman. The campaign has called for an ethics investigation into an increase in Murphy's mortgage from Webster Bank at a low interest rate, just a year after Murphy faced foreclosure on his home due to missing a number of payments.
In an appearance on Regional News Network (WRNN-TV) in Rye Brook, NY Monday night, Simmons quoted Keith Burris, Editorial Page editor for the Manchester, Connecticut Journal Inquirer saying "Murphy is in trouble."
Simmons' appearance in Groton next Wednesday is a major boost for McMahon's campaign, even if he can't make a formal endorsement of her candidacy. His popularity among eastern Connecticut voters can certainly be counted on to make up the minds of undecided voters and further energize a base that already has shown it is significantly on board with McMahon.
That was evident by her nearly 3-1 victory over former Congressman Chris Shays in the August Republican primary. Shays has publicly stated that he is voting for McMahon.
But appearances by Simmons at McMahon campaign events also serve to help him spread another message that is consistent with his work at the Yankee Institute.
To maintain a free market economy he avers, and to bring the United States back from its current economic crisis, severe unemployment, increased reliance on government and precipitous decline in stature on the international scene, "The Senate must go Republican. The current Senate is a disgrace."
Friday, September 28, 2012