Thursday, December 13, 2007

Huckabee attack ad

A new ad has emerged attacking the up and coming presidential candidate Mike Huckabee. He's a former governor of Arkansas, and one of his first acts was to release a serial rapist Wayne Dumond. I won't go over the story here, because others have done a better job summarizing it than I can. But the gist is that Huckabee released Dumond because the irrational Clinton haters thought he was railroaded by Clinton in order to get back at Dumond for "allegedly" raping his second cousin once removed.

Anyway, Mathew Yglesias points to the latest story in this saga. Click the link to see the video.

I'm always fascinated with the story behind where these types of videos come from. For instance, the Swift Boat Vets for Truth from the 2004 campaign illustrated just how dirty modern politics has turned. Yglesias speculates a little into the origins for this story, but it turns out the blog on the Arkansas Times has had no problem finding out who's behind this:

An Arkansas Republican, Keith Emis, takes responsibility. (And there wasn't a deep secret. He's encouraged the mother to tell reporters who did the piece and his phone number appears on the registration for the website set up to carry the video.)...

Emis, 29, grew up in Fayetteville and works in his family's Data Forms business in Greenland. He said he incurred no expenses, save gas and video tapes, and used friends as volunteer help, including one with video production experience. His uncle Donn Emis, a Fayetteville DJ, did the voiceover.

Emis said the stories about the Missouri victims "made him sad." He called Mrs. Davidson and asked if he could visit. She talked to him Sunday and he returned Tuesday and Wednesday to do the video. He declines to talk about politics, such as other disagreements he might have, if any, with Mike Huckabee. Emis comes from a part of the state where Huckabee has left many disaffected Republicans, however, on account of issues ranging from taxes to immigration. Emis wants to stick to Dumond.

"I am not supporting anyone in the presidential race," he said.

"It really made me sad. She's just a simple, nice woman [and a retired Wal-Mart employee]. Her daughter was murdered and it didn't have to happen. And it did happen because Mike Huckabee worked to get Wayne Dumond out of prison."
Emis says he incurred only small expenses and had volunteer help, and I believe him. He also says he has not given support to any of the other Republican candidates.

Yet I doubt this is the whole story. Huckabee released Dumond because of incessant hooting and hollering from the GOP machine due to irrational Clinton hatred. Your average GOP flack isn't going to put together something like this on his own without some push from the anti-Huckabee camp. Club for Growth? Some other group affiliated with one of the other campaigns, yet conveniently no "official" ties?

They should dig deeper on this. There may be nothing, but my guess is that this goes a little deeper than some dope with a camera running around Arkansas to film "simple" "sad" old women.

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