Tuesday, January 12, 2010

Cunningham, Burr going at it

Democrat Cal Cunningham hasn’t made it past the primary yet, but today he’s going after incumbent Republican U.S. Sen. Richard Burr.
Cunningham got a hold of a campaign fundraising letter that Burr sent to a couple of thousand people in November. In it, Burr trashes President Obama (and President Clinton, and President Carter) on national security and urges people to contribute to his campaign.
Burr said he wants to recruit folks to the “Burr Brigade” and he sells military titles: $25 for private, $50 for corporal, $100 for sergeant, $250 for captain, $500 for major, $1,000 for lieutenant colonel and $2,000 for a full colonel.
Cunningham’s camp sent out a press release saying Burr’s fundraising gimmick was disrespectful to service members. They also orchestrated a letter-writing campaign to generate letters to the editor in newspapers across the state. (The Observer generally doesn’t run letters from such organized campaigns.) He also says Burr’s voting record has not been supportive of men and women in uniform.
Burr’s campaign said it had a “Burr Brigade” in his first Senate run in 2004, and that other congressional candidates, including Democrats, have used military titles in fundraising appeals. They dismissed Cunningham’s criticism of his voting record.
“Cunningham’s attack is a feeble attempt to distort Sen. Burr’s long and proven record for our men and women in uniform,” said campaign press secretary Samantha Smith.
Two things stand out to us: Cunningham, for now, should worry about getting past Democratic rivals Elaine Marshall and Ken Lewis more than criticizing Burr.
And even setting aside whether selling military titles is appropriate, Burr’s fundraising letter is surprisingly vitriolic. It might remind some folks of Jesse Helms’ campaign style. He jumps on Clinton’s “ultra-liberal agenda” including “moving women into combat positions.” He directly blames Clinton for the deaths of more than 3,000 Americans on 9-11. He talks about Obama’s “radical social agenda,” “the liberal media,” Obama’s “ultra-liberal rubber stamps in Congress” and Obama’s desire to “decimate our military forces.”
Ah, red meat. You’d think an incumbent wouldn’t need to resort to such breathless pleas.
Looks like it could be a fiery 2010 campaign.
- Posted by The Observer’s editorial board


Josh said...

and we know who the Observer Editorial board will endorse, anybody that doesn't have an R beside their name.

I am sure the DSSC will run negative campaigns again and the Observer and the other liberal rags will accuse the Republican of being the one throwing the mud just like they are in this blog. Cunningham fired the first salvo not Burr.