Kratovil for Congress

That’s the theme today from Salisbury’s Daily Times. Stung by Wayne Gilchrest’s loss in Tuesday’s MD-1 GOP primary my local paper is showing its true stripes in regards to the coming general election.

In their front page piece, “Shore Loses District 1 Stronghold“, reporter Joe Gidjunis emphasizes GOP victor Andy Harris’ status as a Baltimore County resident. We are treated to a sad image of Gilchrest’s Salisbury office being “dark and empty Wednesday, exacerbating the news that the incumbent is a lame duck.” Gidjunis makes good use of “he says, she says” journalism by including a quote from Democrat nominee Frank Kratovil portraying Harris as “extreme”. The cherry on top is Kratovil claiming that, “I’m much closer to Gilchrest than Harris.”

Of course nothing could be farther from the truth. While I have disagreed with Congressman Gilchrest on many issues, I have always believed him to be an honorable man who was (and is) willing to stand up for his principles – come what may. The same can not be said of Kratovil. In all honesty, I don’t believe that Kratovil has any principles other than to do or say whatever it takes to get elected. This is evidenced by Kratovil’s carpetbagging over to the Shore from Prince George’s county, making some friends and contacts and then running for office. Kratovil, in all probability, will run slightly to the right of Gilchrest in the general. If elected he will jump left to do the bidding of Nancy Pelosi and her House leadership. If nothing else, I will never accuse Mr. Kratovil of not knowing which side of his bread is buttered.

The op-ed staff made sure that they got their licks in today as well. In a piece entitled “First District Voters Speak” we see Harris portrayed as a “far-right conservative”. I can only assume that Harris is deemed “far-right” by the staff of the Daily Times because he believes in such seditious concepts as lower taxes, smaller government and Harris has the audacity to go to Church on Sunday (and treat it as more than an occasion to socialize).

Harris and Kratovil differ on most issues. A campaign based on these issues will avoid the need for mud-slinging and attack ads.” Can we expect to hear cries of foul from the paper when Kratovil and / or the DNCC (run by ex-Clinton staffer and prominent lefty Rahm Emmanuel) start running ads accusing Harris of being “too extreme for the First District”? I seriously doubt it. While I enjoyed the paper’s little “truth squad” pieces during the primary race, I have doubts that Mr. Gidjunis will pick apart Kratovil (or allied) ads any more than he critically examined pieces put out by Gilchrest.

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I also enjoy the faulty premise put forth by Ms. Parker & co. that the only issues that matter are the Bay, agriculture and education. I am bemused that the Daily Times believes that education should be a federal matter and that District voters must not be concerned with taxes, terrorism, immigration or national defense (among other FEDERAL issues).

Probably the most specious argument put forth by the paper is in their analysis of the two primaries. On the GOP side we saw an incumbent of long standing effectively challenged by two of the strongest opponents that could have been mustered in the First District. On the Democrat side we saw one elected official, claiming the support of almost every prominent personality in the Maryland Democrat party, winning a sizable (but hardly overwhelming) victory over three other opponents. Yet somehow the Daily Times interprets this as broader support for Kratovil.

Near the end of the piece we are again treated to a framing of the issues by the Daily Times. It needs to be noted that they are all from a left-of-center point of view. The environment, health care, education should be front and center according to our local paper. Forget the notion that education and health care should NOT even be within the Federal purview. By framing the issues such that a campaign becomes a contest of who pledges to spend the most tax dollars we can clearly see what side of the argument the Daily Times will come down on.

cross posted at Delmarva Dealings

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