Tuesday, October 24, 2006

Will the real Mr. Smith please stand up?

It was only a matter of time before Dana Garrett over at Delaware Watch began to "go after" state House Majority Leader Wayne A. Smith (make note of his name, by the way). Which is fine, of course. As I mentioned on the relevant thread's comment section, Dana is indeed asking good questions of Wayne (like he has all candidates running for various offices). But that doesn't stop Dana, of course, from using overheated hyperbole and rhetoric, not to mention seemingly getting a lot of his information exclusively from Smith's opponent, Carl Colantuono. For instance, Garrett writes (using Colantuono as his sole source):

But after the Progressive Voices interview with Smith’s opponent Carl Colantuono, I learned that Smith will not appear at any public event in his district to talk if Colantuono is present for the same purpose. Smith won’t even debate Colantuono inspite of his reputation of being a brilliant conservative and a skilled orator.

That's news to Wayne. In an e-mail, he writes to me:

On my supposed being “afraid” of Carl Coluntouno. I’d debate him anytime, anywhere, anyplace. There have not been any scheduled debates. I’ve missed some meetings this fall because my wife is recuperating from surgery and was in bed for a while. Many nights have been spent helping my four kids with home work during some of the civic association meetings that Coluntouno attended. In addition, I’ve been available every Tuesday morning for sixteen years at the Branmar Plaza Brew Ha Ha. Public access is a big part of the way I serve. Anyone can see me at least once a week if they want me.

I wonder about two things. First, if Garrett is such a blogging "sleuth," how is it that he cannot pick up a thing called the telephone and call Smith to get his reaction to Colantuono's claim(s)? Either that, or the blogger's best friend, e-mail? Second, how is that Garrett could so erroneously attribute an answer by sixth representative district candidate William E. Smith to seventh representative district incumbent Wayne A. Smith? I know that "Smith" is a popular name, but yeesh!

A commenter to the thread then attempts to recycle claims that Wayne's opponent from the last election attempted to make use of. For instance, the commenter states:

He said on the house floor that bastard should be left on the birth certificate of children so the mother can see the error of her ways. Is that cold blooded and sick or what? Women have left politics because of Wayne's mean ways. The Talaban treat women better then Wayne Smith does.

Smith's response:

They are recycling the [Steve] Tanzer lies from last election. One response cites the “Bastard” debate. We were debating the name of a “Bastardy Exam” a forced paternity test ordered by a court for deadbeat dads. The DE General Assembly took the term “Bastard” out of the Delaware code in the 1920’s – yes the 1920’s. This lie was exposed two years ago when my opponent used it.

Colantuono himself jumps in on the comment thread too. He says:

Mr. Wayne A. Smith has not provided any answers to the News Journal Questionaire that I have been able to find. I have yet to see any response to this campaign from Mr. Wayne A. Smith at all.

Colantuono must not be a very perceptive person. After all, Wayne Smith's answers to the News Journal questionnaire are directly under Colantuono's own. (The full page of Smith's answers is here.) Colantuono continues:

Smith noted that since taking office in 1990, he has offered regular Tuesday morning meetings in the district, buying coffee for any constituents who show up to talk at Branmar Plaza during a half-hour slot.

"You can always get Wayne Smith at least once a week, face-to-face," Smith said.

Too bad many of us are at work or on the way to work to see you then - when we'd rather have you join us in the work that is already underway in our community. But then Mr. Wayne A. Smith isn't interested in that.

Smith's meetings at the Branmar Plaza Brew Ha Ha are at 7:00 am. That's usually before people leave for work but actually is a time when many people are in transit to their jobs, getting a cup of java. What better time to chat with constituents about their concerns? Colantuono is grasping at straws here, plain and simple -- much like his silly line "I go talk to people here, and I find that very few people know who [Smith] he is. The only ones who do know him are in Dover." This is such a laughable statement as to induce hiccups. As I note on the blog to which I normally contribute, I have worked on Smith's campaigns over the years. The only people I encountered when doing literature drops (or whatever else) who didn't (don't) know Wayne are relative newcomers to the 7th district.

Bottom line: As stated above, Garrett has some good questions to ask. There's no need for the ridiculous hyperbole and name-calling (Garrett calls Smith a "sissy" -- how quaint), nor his (and Colantuono's) factual inaccuracies. Just remember: "phone," "e-mail," "confirm."


Anonymous cardinals fan said...

Gee, a liberal use namecalling and lies to attack a republican who has superior intelligence, common sense, work ethic and outstanding service to the community/state! Naw, that doesn't happen on a daily basis.....it really does stick in your craw sometimes the lies that the left spews....Run Smith run.....Win Smith win!

6:30 PM  
Blogger M. McKain said...

I liked this site when it was actually about the 2006 campaign and election issues instead of a forum for attacking other bloggers and discussing their own individual beliefs and theories. What happened, guys?

9:34 AM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

mckain - ditto that

have the DE conservatives run out of ideas?

11:22 AM  
Blogger ColossusHube said...

Mike: I could ask whether you apply the same standards to your liberal [blogging] brethren. How is this post an "attack"? How is pointing out an incredibly stupid error against a political candidate an "attack"? How is correcting the record on Colantuono's comments an "attack"?

I think you're just using this as an excuse b/c the people not benefitting from this post are to the left.

11:34 AM  
Blogger Jeff the Baptist said...

I liked this site when it was actually about the 2006 campaign and election issues...

One of the biggest issues this election cycle is the slanted campaigning happening on both sides of the partisan aisle. TV right now is just one attack ad after another employing half-truths and innuendo in an attempt to redefine the candidates in order to get ahead. It's little more than scare tactics and name calling on both sides. There are exceptions of course, but that's what is happening.

If we can reveal the whole-truths hidden underneath the half-truths then we should do so. I can't see how that is bad for anyone except the people hoping to benefit from the half-truths in the first place.

4:28 PM  
Blogger M. McKain said...

No Hube, I have enough sense to realize when I come to a web-site with "Conservative" in the title its probably slanted to the right - that's fine. I prefer Conservative blogs because there are more people to argue with. My point is, your topics as of late have had less to do with campaign issues and more to do with issues among fellow bloggers. Most readers don't care about who likes who in the blogging world; they care about what is going to happen come November 7th. That is what this site was originally about. That was back when I enjoyed reading this site on a regular basis, for a more balanced perspective on the upcoming election.

7:33 AM  

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