With his latest waffling on a distasteful attack ad, Kevin Cramer displayed yet again his word rings hollow. Yesterday the Senate Leadership Fund (SLF), a Republican Super PAC whose sole intent is to elect Republicans to the U.S. Senate, released an outrageously inappropriate ad that showed dying Syrian children as a means to attack Heitkamp. In their response, Cramer’s campaign is trying to have it both ways which is something average North Dakotans are already seeing through.
Last week, Cramer told a Grand Forks radio station he’d “absolutely speak out” if an ad was “distasteful or outrageous.” He has told other news outlets that these sort of attack ads would not land well in North Dakota. Yet, while some in the campaign softly say the ad is appropriate before celebrating its intent, others in the campaign outright praised it. As expected, Cramer’s allies in the state’s right-wing media have blindly amplified it to further their eager attacks on Heitkamp.
“While we find the ad’s approach inappropriate, distasteful and not how we would choose to campaign, the point the ad makes is valid.” said Tim Rasmussen, Cramer’s Communication Director. Not how they choose to campaign? Jake Blum, Cramer’s Deputy Communication Director, State Representative, and second in line to Rasmussen amplified and praised the attack ad as “Hard-hitting.” Blum has since deleted the tweet which now joins the thousands of other tweets he’s deleted since joining Cramer.
The point the ad makes is valid? Those remarks seem eerily similar to the time Cramer defended former Press Secretary Sean Spicer’s remarks contrasting Syria’s Assad and Hitler. The “not without some validity” caused Senate Republicans to look elsewhere for a candidate. With this ad purchase, McConnell and Cramer’s deep-pocketed out-of-state friends certainly appear to have fully moved on from the past cringe-worthy comments.
Cramer’s campaign cannot coordinate with the Republican PAC which allows his campaign to play it both ways. Softly say it isn’t how they would have done it with one line while amplifying it in the very next sentence. What good does his word mean when his actions cancel them out the next day?