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In MO-2 (state House of Representatives) we have a really good woman who is the incumbent.  Rebecca McClanahan is a Democrat, the only nurse in the state house, and a hardworking representative who is good with constituent services, good on health care and good on education (she was a nursing professor for 30 years).  Her opponent, Thom Van Vleck, has spent $120,000 on largely negative ads.

How to respond?  She has had some good local ads herself:

It has been a really nasty race, with advertisements saying things like "She is radically pro-abortion" (which no one I know, even the most fervently pro-choice people, is, let alone Rebecca), and "She is not one of us," even though her family has been in NE Missouri for seven generations.  But the mailer that the local tv station reported on this evening was really beyond the pale.  It was sent out by the National Rifle Association Political Victory Fund.

Rebecca McClanahan has also been a supporter of Second Amendment rights, which makes it even more aggravating that the NRA has been lying about not only her record, but about even who is the incumbent in the race.  The local tv station even headlines it "Campaign flyer full of lies"!

The story, in part:

The flyer states, in part, "Your National Rifle Association Political Victory Fund ( has endorsed Representative Thom Van Vleck for re-election in House District 2."

The fact is Van Vleck has not held public office before.

Van Vleck pointed out that the flyer was not paid for by his campaign.

"You as a private citizen could go put an ad in the paper endorsing a candidate or bashing my opponent, and in that respect, anybody could do that. That's the best way to know if it came from the candidate is to see who paid for the ad," said Van Vleck.

Of course he has no qualifications for public office -- he does have a local social work job and has worked to develop a local Highland Games program, so he has been involved in the local community.  But his advertisements all talk about his being "One of Us" with the implication that Rebecca isn't.  

The flyer goes on to incorrectly state, "Representative Vleck has consistenly voted in favor of our Second Amendment rights, and was the sponsor of both Range Protection and Right to Carry legislation. He also voted in support of a bill to prohibit the confiscation of law-abiding citizens’ firearms during a disaster or state of emergency."

"I've certainly made an effort to take full responsiblity for my campaign, and we made a decision early on that it would be a 100-percent positive campaign," McClanahan added.

Van Vleck emphasized that he wasn’t aware of the false flyer until Sunday night when someone e-mailed him about it.

"I'm so busy out campaigning day to day, it's like in the last week I barely check my mail or read the papers. I have some people do that for me because I'm just so focused on the campaign, and so until you (KTVO) actually called me and let me know directly, I wasn't sure exactly what had happened," said Van Vleck.

So he really is working hard to get elected for local office, but he doesn't have time to read the local papers?  This is not encouraging, but then there is nothing this guy could do to win my vote.  His main thing is the abortion stuff.  Everything else he wants to do is what she has done and done well.  Bring money and jobs to town?  She is good at it.  Etc., etc.

I don't expect anyone to notice this; I don't even know if there is an election diary rescue tomorrow.  It will be too late to change anything by the time anyone sees this.  I hope she wins reelection.  She is a great representative, and she is probably one of a thousand local candidates who have had national money poured in to knock them out of office.  But she is my representative, and I like her.  I have given her (for me) a lot of money, and I have my fingers crossed.  The Obama and Move On people in town will help, but I wish it were still possible in Missouri to cast a straight party ticket.  I have hopes for tomorrow, but am a bit worried too.  There have been really nasty things said in this race.  

Originally posted to annetteboardman on Mon Nov 03, 2008 at 09:12 PM PST.

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