Wednesday, May 21, 2008

Silly fight

Republicans are attacking Jim Hunt for using pictures of himself in uniform in his campaign. Setting aside the merits of the GOP's claim, this doesn't sound like a fight Republicans want to have.

First, the rationale for the Department of Defense directive the GOP cites is pretty lame. Seriously, does anybody believe that putting on a uniform implies endorsement by the Defense Department? Soldiers are free citizens, not federal mouthpieces.

Second, the dust-up gave Hunt a perfect opportunity to strike back by citing Denny Rehberg's less than stellar record on veterans' issues. Rehberg may have good reasons for his vote, but they aren't likely to surface in this sort of exchange.

Third, the flap also calls attention to the fact that Hunt has a long record of military service while Rehberg has none. I would never vote for anyone because of a military record -- heck, I've got one of those -- but the issue can only help negate Republicans' built-in edge on support-the-troops issues.

Dumb, dumb and dumb.

UPDATE: Here, according to Hunt, is the photo to which Rehberg objects.


Dave said...

I've seen his TV ads, and wasn't the slightest bit confused about the fact that he's no longer on active duty status. I haven't seen anything in print or online of him actually IN a uniform, either. I expect you're right: the Republicans have lit a fuse on something that may well blow up in their faces.

Chuck Rightmire said...

I wonder about support the troops being much of a Republican issue if we look back over the last five years: lack of body armor, poorly armored vehicles, veterans hospitals, soldier's barracks, etc. Seems to me the only thing the Republicans have supported the troops with is their mouths.