Saturday, October 16, 2010

Dudley's Going Wobbly

Seriously, he's off his game.

First of all, the Right-Skewing Rasmussen came out with this poll on Monday showing Kitzhaber with a small but significant lead. I attribute this to Dudley's meager and barely adequate performance during the one and only televised debate on KGW. But Nate Silver who, this week, flipped the predicted outcome of the race from Dudley to Kitzhaber as the likely winner showed Dudley already beginning to make his descent down and Kitzhaber shifting up even before the debate on September 27th. In order to overcome the Blue Tide of Oregon Democrats' GOTV efforts, Dudley needs to be up in the polls by a good 5 points or it's a lock for Kitzhaber. That's the reality that the Dudley campaign is grappling with.

So, here Dudley is at the Freethrow Line again and what does his campaign do? Dredge up that wicked little "investigative journalism" piece on KGW's "The Square" explaining away what we all heard him say about Oregon's minimum wage, dismissing it as just an editing job. In fact, he uses the KGW reporter's own words in his brand new ad "Don't". Let's be clear. This is why letting an inaccurate piece of journalism float out there, largely unaddressed and uncorrected, is such a bad thing. Leaving aside for the moment, the appearance that KGW is just a media flack for a candidate, the "Don't" ad claims that "Kitzhaber highly edited Dudley's words" and cites the Oregonian on Oct. 11th.


The Oregonian piece quoted in the "Don't" ad pictured ACTUALLY reads thus:

"The fact is, the Kitzhaber ad does take some highly edited snippets from a rambling answer that Dudley gave to a questioner about the minimum wage back on Sept. 9 - and that Democrats have used against him ever since." Watching Dudley's ad, you'd get the feeling that Kitzhaber sat in a dark, smoke-filled room somewhere and edited the piece himself. Laughably, Dudley's campaign cherry-picked what they wanted from the article and left behind the nuggets that buttress THE FACTS. Mapes goes on to repeat what anyone with a brain and basic comprehension skills already knew:

"But the Kitzhaber campaign could point to parts of Dudley's answer that buttress their ad. The commercial quotes Dudley as saying that "having the highest minimum wage in the country negatively impacts the state." You can see from the transcript (or the Youtube video of his statement) that it is reasonable to think Dudley was agreeing with a questioner who expressed unhappiness about the minimum wage." is reasonable to think because Dudley's mouth moved and his words said he was agreeing with a questioner who expressed unhappiness about the minimum wage.

Enough with this foolishness. First of all, whoever is responsible for the original KGW piece needs to, at long last, make a correction on this story! Stop painting the sentient, intelligent voters as unable to understand what we heard. The reporter in the story, or WHOEVER is responsible at KGW, edited the original video in a fashion to "prove" that the Kitzhaber people edited the video, and then gave a platform for Dudley to respond to it. It's disgusting, appalling journalism. And NOW, Dudley himself is using a snippet in his ad to attack his opponent. KGW should be concerned that it looks like someone there is in the tank for Dudley and I just don't think that's a good policy for a TV station broadcasting over the public airways.

But of course, the desperate Dudley camp is pulling out it's "big guns" now that HE is down in the polls. And KGW gave them a nice sound byte to do so.


Next on the blog, yeah that claim that Kitzhaber wants to tax the homeless is a load of garbage too.


James Kiester said...

It's kinda nice to see them desperately grasping at straws though. I think Oregonians are smart enough to see the panic behind the newest ads.

As for KGW, they won't correct anything until their ratings begin to suffer as a result of the misinformation.

Benjamin Fahlgren said...

It is nice to have a page this election cycle because it allows us to look to a unbiased place for the truth. Politifact found the claim that Chris Dudley thinks Oregon's minimum wage is too high as half true. However they do on to say "Nevertheless, any reasonable person watching the original exchange would believe that Dudley agrees the minimum wage is too high or, at the least, problematic" - pretty much what you said in your post.

I am glad that we have Dud on the defensive though.