January 07, 2006
A message from David Harris

The filing season has barely ended, but already there's some ugly stuff happening. Some jokers have attempted to smear David Harris up in CD06 by making false claims about him and his Army record. Harris has released a statement about these rumors:

Recent rumors on the internet have accused Democratic congressional candidate David Harris of being the subject of an adultery investigation conducted by the military. As fighting Democrats, we cannot and will not let these false allegations go unchallenged.

Follow Me To DC and David Harris categorically deny that David is the subject of any such investigation now or during his enlistment. These accusations, originally made in responses posted on the Texas-based blog annatopia.com , are patently false. These attacks are being leveled by people with personal grudges who are determined to smear Democrat David Harris, thus ensuring the re-election of corrupt Republican Congressman Joe Barton.

For the past several months, supporters of the Barton campaign have been making inquiries about David to his former colleagues and friends in the military in a desperate attempt to dig up dirt on the next Congressman from TX-06. Joe Barton doesn't have a record he can stand on, so his supporters have created salacious gossip and attacks. Congressman Barton has done nothing to distance himself from these attacks, and seems to prefer a campaign run from the gutter and focused on baseless attacks, instead of new ideas and improving the lives of the people of Texas. David Harris is a veteran and defender of America who has nothing but pride in his record as a citizen, soldier, and family man. Joe Barton is a corrupt Washington insider who has nothing but negative attacks to offer the voters. Congressman Barton is running scared, finally facing a legitimate challenger, one he sneers at as "the guy in the army costume".

Michelle and David Harris would also like to acknowledge that, like many military families suffering under the stress of extended deployments of their loved ones, they have had personal issues with their marriage. Michelle and David honor their vows and commitment to each other and their children. Today their family is stronger than ever, and they are extremely disappointed that their political opponents have chosen to take the low road and make the personal political.

David and Michelle understand all the sacrifices a military family makes, and David has vowed to do everything he can to support our military families as the representative of the sixth congressional district.

The Harris family and Follow Me to DC will not follow Joe Barton into a campaign of negative attacks. Instead, Follow Me to DC will choose to focus on the real issues concerning the residents of the sixth district: rising health care and energy costs, failing schools, the war in iraq, and homeland security. We challenge the Barton campaign to do the same.

Anna, whose blog was on the receiving end of some of these trolls' comments, has a few words for the rumormongers. Harris also has a followup statement on his campaign site. I hope (though I can't say that I have faith) that this will be the end of it.

Posted by Charles Kuffner on January 07, 2006 to Election 2006 | TrackBack

Sounds straight out of Karl Rove's playbook. In fact, it's a textbook case of "Swiftboating."

As fighting Democrats, we cannot and will not let these false allegations go unchallenged.

I'd have preferred the plainspoken "lies" to the legalistic "false allegations," but still, this is good. If only John Kerry (or, for that matter, Michael Dukakis back in '88) had responded this forcefully and (ahem) swiftly.

The Harris family and Follow Me to DC will not follow Joe Barton into a campaign of negative attacks.

That's good, but I think they meant "smear campaign." Negative attacks based on a candidate's public record are fine. It's libelous smears that the good guys avoid.

Posted by: Mathwiz on January 9, 2006 3:06 PM