MT Senate 2014: In the Land of China…

Most Montanans who follow politics know that Max Baucus resigned from the U.S. Senate to become the U.S. Ambassador to China. He was given the Ambassadorship because he was not running for office again, and the Democrats wanted to give someone a head start to keep the senate seat with the Democrats. That someone ended up being Lt. Governor John Walsh.

Before all this happened, about all I (and Baucus) knew about China came from Forrest Gump who said, “In the land of China, people hardly got nothing at all.”

According to the campaigns of U.S. Senate candidates John Walsh and Steve Daines, China has something that belongs to Americans: American jobs. To hear them tell the story, it’s all because the other guy let the jobs go to China.

First we had the campaign for Walsh release an ad saying, “Daines worked for years in China helping an American company build factories there at the same time Daines’ company was firing thousands of American workers here.”

By the way, I did get a good laugh out of the much younger Daines with those big glasses.

Then we had Daines counter the Walsh ad with an ad of his own saying “John Walsh is the only candidate who supported shipping American jobs to China.”

These senate campaigns are starting to sound a little like what one would hear on a pre-school playground. If these two guys actually face off in the General Election this November, let’s hope they crank up the old fact machine a notch or two.

Most people hate negative ads.  The facts show that Daines was the first to go on the attack in the senate race (which should draw boos from Montanans).  When I first heard the latest Daines ad I thought, “That’s stretching it some.”

Now Walsh is “challenging Daines to release his full business records relating to his work for Procter & Gamble in Hong Kong and Mainland China, as well as his work for RightNow Technologies and Oracle.”

They also challenged Daines to send them a case of Charmin to prove he actually worked for Proctor & Gamble (just kiddin).

Requesting those business records is a good move by the Walsh campaign. Daines won’t do it (he has a record of not responding to requests) and he’ll counter the request by saying it’s a “Hail Mary” or a “desperate attempt” from Walsh.

The bottom line is if Daines does not release those records, it will raise questions. The drumbeat will grow and grow until November. Sometimes in campaigns (especially here in Montana), all one side has to do is throw enough crap at a candidate, and some is bound to stick. Republicans in Montana have a terrible record in responding to attacks.

It could also be a debate issue – that is if Daines actually debates.


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