Saturday, August 12, 2006

Stephanie Herseth Has A "Fan" In New York

For those unfamiliar with a minor controversy brewing here in South Dakota. Our lone member of Congress has someone from the New York area that is trying to start rumors regarding Herseth in an apparent attempt to smear her just in time for the November mid-terms.

The campaign started last week when someone edited her entry in Wikipedia and added the following
....In both elections, Herseth campaigned as an "independent voice" and is generally considered to be a moderate Democrat. She opposes abortion rights, citing her new found change of heart after announcing her pregnancy with fiancee Ajay Bruno’s baby.

This entry was quickly removed but not before one of our local bloggers caught it and traced the IP back to someone in New York. Normally that would have been the end of it as the practice of editing Wiki entries with false information isn’t that uncommon but in this case, it is where the fun really got started.

Lee Breard, the campaign manager for Bruce Whalen who is Herseth’s opponent in the upcoming elections, was apparently unaware that this is a common occurrence and sent an email to a reporter and blogger from our state’s second largest newspaper asking for confirmation of the "new information" and included a nice little smear of Herseth himself when he said "This is a big change from being a Home Wrecker with a Texas Congressman two years ago!"

Now after the Whalen campaign was inundated with the required spanking from everyone including the Herseth campaign for first off taking the Wiki addition as truth and then adding their own unsubstantiated smear in the process, most thought the story would end there. That was until last night.

Comments made on several blogs including my South Dakota politics blog last night by what appears to be the same individual that did the Wiki drive by is now attempting to further the controversy. The commenter, who calls himself Ajay Bruno and claims to be Stephanie Herseth’s chief of staff, Jeff Navin holds that position by the way, is now saying that he has resigned from the Herseth campaign and will be supporting her challenger Bruce Whalen.
These allegations are indeed true. The Congresswoman is denying it because she wishes to hide these changes in her life and her political viewpoints until after the election to avoid a loss of support among her base. Her dishonesty is only further proof that she is not worthy of representing the great state of South Dakota in the House of Representatives. As so, I have resigned from her staff due to this conflict, and endorse the Republican candidate, Bruce Whalen. I ask the general public to please respect our privacy in this matter at this difficult time.

Now the question should be asked why would someone that is apparently from New York (the IP addresses in both cases resolves to a cable internet provider in New York) have a beef with a junior Congresswoman from South Dakota?

Some GOP group looking to close the gap that Democrat Herseth holds over her Republican challenger?

A pro-life group looking to inject another issue into our upcoming vote on the abortion ban?

A "lone gunman" that has an axe to grind with Herseth or the Democratic Party (Herseth is the only incumbent Democrat running for re-election for a national office in South Dakota)?

Insert your own theory here.

The possibilities are endless...

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