Monday, September 17, 2012

PolitiFact Rips Tommy's Gay-Baiting, But The Damaging Deed Is Done

PolitiFact correctly slams Tommy Thompson's campaign with a "Pants on Fire" rating for claiming it was not responsible for a senior, veteran media staffer who sent out a gay-baiting Tweet and video link on a campaign account that was aimed at Democratic opponent Tammy Baldwin:

Our rating

A Thompson consultant [Darrin Schmitz] said the campaign was not responsible for an email that criticized Baldwin as not representing "heartland values."

But the email came from the campaign’s chief spokesman on a campaign account at a key political moment in the campaign. It was sent to conservative bloggers and others. It was clearly meant to draw attention to the video of Baldwin’s appearance at the gay pride event.

The average reader of the email got the message loud and clear: Thompson’s campaign was criticizing Baldwin.

Schmitz’s statement is false, and it’s ridiculous. We rate it Pants on Fire.
So good for PolitiFact, though it's too bad that the rating service doesn't have a shaming or disgracing graphic, because that's what Tommy and his campaign deserve.

For one thing, Thompson said in the 2007 presidential debates (yes, he actually ran for President before failing miserably) that employers with a moral objection to homosexuality should be able to fire gay workers, so we've heard this garbage from Tommy before.

And in this current episode of gay-bashing, Tommy and his crew knew full well they were employing a sleazy tactic.

And knew, as campaign veterans, that their tactics would be slammed continually by some media further for subsequently trying to paper over them over, but they made the calculus by waiting days after the Tammy Baldwin dirty work was done that whatever media hits they absorbed would be worth the clear dog-whistling signal to the GOP's intolerant, fearful and homophobic base.

Apologies don't undo the damage. Sure - - he walked back his 2007 anti-gay position, but how many chances does a forgiving electorate offer?

Tommy Thompson's ego-driven, win-at-any-cost 2012 turn to the Right at this stage of his long political career and pathetic grasp after one last fancy title and power-position  - - this additional presidential campaign outrage five years ago (followed by explanations, apologies, etc. etc.) should have been the end of his career - - has been nothing short of nightmarish to watch.

More and more, Tommy is talking to an empty chair, degrading himself and demeaning the political process in a state that needs recovery, not fresh wounds.

Even if he wins the Senate seat, he's the biggest loser.

A version of this posting appears on the Purple Wisconsin site.


Anonymous said...

tommy's never had to face the consequences for his pants on fire, if you know what i mean.

morninmist said...

It never ends for the TeaRepugs!!

Tommy T bigot (mau) posts on Patch mau -2:58 pm on Monday, September 17, 2012 … #wiunion

Anonymous said...

I don't see how this can hurt Tammy. Everyone knows she is gay. I don't even remember her coming out. This only hurts Tommy - he proves he is a bigot. He has much more to to hide than Tammy.

Jake formerly of the LP said...

Correct- Anon- 4:38. If anything, I thought the video made Tammy look good, given that she's having clean fun in the video, which goes against the image the average RW hate radio type tries to give of her.

By comparison, Thompson seems out of control of his own campaign, and refused to step up and admit it was bad form for his communications guy to do it. And then Tommy gets the pants on fire for saying that scum Nemoir wasn't acting as part of his campaign when IT'S SENT FROM THE CAMPAIGN ADDRESS.

Between that and some effective ads showing Tommy as the favor-trading lobbyist he had become, any lead Thompson had is probably gone.