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Twisting the truth in the Connecticut Senate race

By Marisa Katz

So it looks like, after all, we may be beyond the days when combat service mattered in politics. And the days when lying about combat service mattered in politics.

As Chris Cillizza noted, a Quinnipiac poll out today has Connecticut Attorney General Richard Blumenthal leading former World Wrestling Entertainment CEO Linda McMahon by 25 points in the U.S. Senate race, with almost two thirds of voters saying that Blumenthal's statements about his Vietnam-era military service don’t make them less likely to vote for him.

The twisting the truth award of the day, though, goes to Republican Senate candidate Peter Schiff, who just issued this statement:

"Based on the poll results today and her high negatives, Linda McMahon doesn't have what it takes to put the smackdown on Blumenthal. She bought the Republican endorsement at the convention, but she clearly cannot buy the affection of Connecticut voters. The Nutmeg State wants a political outsider and a real grassroots candidate. Frankly, I am the only true newcomer and independent in this political showdown. It is becoming increasingly clear that Linda McMahon is not the kind of public servant Connecticut wants."

The gap between Blumenthal and Schiff? That’d be 34 points – in Blumenthal’s favor.

By Marisa Katz  | May 27, 2010; 5:05 PM ET
Categories:  Katz  | Tags:  Marisa Katz  
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Anyone who knows the facts has to acknowledge the experience, service and intelligence of Rob Simmons - the poorer and ignored candidate.

Posted by: GaryEMasters | May 27, 2010 7:23 PM | Report abuse

Simmons has two bronze stars from Vietnam.

Posted by: GaryEMasters | May 27, 2010 7:27 PM | Report abuse

The U.S. Senate race in Connecticut is not about who served in Vietnam or who didn't. It is about trying to find a relatively honest candidate and future senator who has a track record of working hard for the people of Connecticut and who will share that with the rest of the nation.

Linda McMahon wants to buy her way into the U.S.Senate and tries to justify her candidacy by all the jobs her Wrestling Empire has created in CT. Most of us are not impressed. Rather we are more concerned over her time and again nationally demonstrated lack of human decency and anything for a buck attitude. WWF is acting.... but so are porn movies. WWF is more dangerous than porn: the scripted violence and the reliance of the WWF on steroids for their top and even average performers promotes violence and substance abuse to folks from ages 10 to 100.

Rob Simmons is a great man and I'm sure would have been a great candidate for the Senate.Somehow the GOP here never fully appreciates him.

But, again the race in Connecticut is not about Vietnam, Watergate, who inhaled or who didn't. It is about the best person running for the office who the average Connecticut citizen has learned to trust during his years of service to the state. Richard Blumenthal is the best we have at the moment. Did he "misspeak", lie or embellish the truth? He did, but our media helped spread the lie,even after he had corrected himself in other speeches.

Finally, we have a track record of crooked politicians in Connecticut,I would hate to have the state legislature and current Governor investigated by an objective source. On the other hand, I guess we just haven't been as lucky with honest politicians as the other 49 states in the Union.

Posted by: dranda | May 27, 2010 8:12 PM | Report abuse

Sorry to all the Rob Simmons fans, but your boy completely blew it.

He can complain about Linda McMahon's money all day long, but how does her money explain the fact that, instead of explaining to voters why he's the best man for the job, he's done nothing for the last 8-9 months but wage a negative campaign full of attacks against her? His own actions turned off a great deal of voters, and even leaders in his own party.

He thought he was a shoe-in to get the GOP endorsement, as evident by his repeated statements that he wouldn't force a primary if he lost. That demonstrates a total lack of awareness on his part as McMahon stormed ahead of him in recent months.

Then, when he lost, he had no Plan B except to bluster for a few days about going back on his word and having a primary, only to "quit" the race without actually having the decency to quit.

And this is the guy who was supposed to give Blumenthal a run for his money? Give me a break. McMahon won't win, but she will come closer to victory that Simmons ever could have dreamed.

Posted by: SlipperyPete | May 28, 2010 6:49 AM | Report abuse

Boy, are CT residents sick and tired of the pundits beating up on Richard Blumenthal! Mr. Blumenthal has been elected a record five times as Attorney General, reflecting voters' positive opinion of his achievements in the position. Fortunately, he has been little affected by the NYTimes' hatchet job on his military service during the Vietnam War era, because he has been entirely straightforward and consistent in describing his service in the reserves, and the voters know it. It's rather discouraging that the payback for Mr. Blumenthal's TWO DECADES of devotion to serving CT's veterans has been his characterization as a liar when he indeed did mis-state his service two or three times. Perhaps if one was speaking extemporaneously in front of or about veterans fifty times a year for decades, as Mr. Blumenthal has, one might misspeak every so often. Ms. McMahon's campaign spent millions and millions of dollars to smear Blumenthal; what has SHE done for veterans lately?

Posted by: mhd51 | May 28, 2010 8:06 AM | Report abuse

to all,

Blumenthal is a FRAUD & like all too many of the DIMocRAT extremists is INCAPABLE of telling THE TRUTH.

if he had even a teaspoon of honor & common decency, he would QUIT the race & hide his head in shame. - he did NOT "mis-speak". instead he KNOWINGLY LIED & took credit for VietNam service that he never did.

we REAL VietNam era vets just want him GONE!

yours, TN46
USA, retired

Posted by: texasnative46 | May 28, 2010 8:46 AM | Report abuse

There is a larger issue that should be examined. Has the day come when politicians can be caught lying and get away with it? Either a lie has some meaning or it does not. If we say that lying has no meaning, it will open a new door to a profession that it generally in less regard than say used car sales people. One must always remember that the vast majority of people in this country have no confidence in the ability of our elected leaders to solve any of this country's problems. Simply put, if Blumenthal is elected to the Senate, the loser is the American public.

Posted by: jeffreed | May 28, 2010 8:53 AM | Report abuse

Wanting to elect a liar doesn't say much for the Connecticut voters. But then what would one expect from the East Coast?

Posted by: staterighter | May 28, 2010 9:20 AM | Report abuse

Marisa Katz wrote: And the days when lying about combat service mattered in politics.

Sadly, we're not beyond the days when a hit piece passed on by an anonymous source working for a right wing campaign won't get published in a major newspaper and then treated as gospel by our corporate media.


Posted by: ifthethunderdontgetya | May 28, 2010 11:23 AM | Report abuse

I think this article misses the point.

Marisa, the national media have twisted a single misspoken word and created a story out of whole cloth that serves its purposes. Luckily the people of Connecticut cannot be manipulated.

Posted by: caiside | May 28, 2010 5:29 PM | Report abuse


just like HANOI-John Kerry (who wore medals that he did NOT win & was NOT entitled to wear), Blumenthal is a LIAR, a FRAUD & a DISGRACE.

he once distributed a picture of himself WEARING a USMC uniform and wearing RVN service medals, when he NEVER spent a minute in RVN.

get the message: HE KNOWINGLY & REPEATEDLY LIED & is a creature WITHOUT HONOR or even COMMON DECENCY! ===> he is GARBAGE to every REAL veteran!

yours, TN46
USA, Retired

Posted by: texasnative46 | May 29, 2010 5:33 PM | Report abuse

So it looks like, after all, we may be beyond the days when combat service mattered in politics




Posted by: yourmomscalling | May 29, 2010 6:56 PM | Report abuse

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