Looks like even long-time Republican incumbents are really feeling the heat. So what should Republicans do? In the case of struggling state Sen. Don Benton, R-Vancouver, the answer is predictable. Just lie.
Senate Republicans Thursday accused Democrat David Carrier of violating state campaign finance laws by receiving $40,000 more from the Senate Democratic Campaign Committee over the past two weeks than the law allows his campaign to accept.
But Carrier, who is running to unseat Republican Sen. Don Benton, denied the charge, calling it “a complete lie.”
“What they’re trying to do is create the appearance of inappropriate activity that isn’t there,” he said.
And what exactly was the heinous crime that has the senate Republicans so exorcised?
Chris Gregorich, executive director of the Senate Democratic Campaign Committee, said the committee’s contributions remain well within the limit.
As of Thursday, he said, the Carrier campaign reported $31,070 in in-kind contributions and $14,000 in cash from the committee, for a total of $45,070.
Gregorich said the committee wrote a $30,000 check to the Carrier campaign on Oct. 12 that would have put the campaign over the legal limit. But he said the check was written in error by the committee’s treasurer and later destroyed.
Pass the smelling salts. Now the GOP Party is complaining about stuff that didn’t actually happen. It stretches credulity to believe that Senate Republicans actually believed their Democratic counterparts would violate contribution limits by $40,000. I mean, wisecracks aside, these are professional campaign operatives on both sides.
Besides, the voters could give a rip, especially right now. Little things like retirement funds and jobs are weighing a wee bit more on people’s minds than manufactured Republican outrage. But Republicans are always the victims, you know. It couldn’t possibly be that Republicans generally have few positive ideas and people are finally seeing through their boilerplate platitudes about taxes.
And with the PDC complaint coming on behalf of a special interest glutton like Benton, the whole kerfuffle is nothing but a last-weekend smear aimed to the GOP Party base. Like we’ve never seen this play before.
If nothing else it was good to see Carrier call them out on their lie. He’s one to watch.
Here’s hoping Carrier gets added to the list of incredibly pleasant surprises come Tuesday.