Monday, July 23, 2007

And So It Begins...

The good part about primaries is that it creates stronger candidates. It gives the eventual nominee a chance to practice and refine his or her campaign skills before taking on the other party, and it raises the profile of others in the party who deserve attention. Primaries are good.

Primary fights, however, can get out of hand. When candidates lose their focus and start attacking one another over petty things, it makes everyone look foolish. They should discuss issues, and they should discuss their records and experience. But at the end of the day, they need to remember that any one of them would be better than the guy that's there right now.

Will we see a negative Democratic primary in the 7th District? While I doubt that it'll be as bad as the Republican primary in 2006, we're not off to a good start.

Berryman said his focus is solely Walberg, an unabashed conservative who Berryman says does not represent the majority of voters in the district. But when asked about radio commercials for Nacht's legal firm that began playing across the district a few months ago, Berryman didn't hesitate to question their integrity.

The commercials, and corresponding billboards, include patriotic slogans and Nacht's fight to save jobs as an attorney.

"It just seems real funny that they're being played here in Lenawee County,'' the former Adrian mayor noted. "Is it illegal, probably not, but does it skirt campaign finance laws? People can look ... and say that it does.''

The accusation prompted a seething response.

"Berryman's claims are patently false and it's sad he's had to resort to negative attacks, but I understand considering his mediocre fundraising report,'' said Chris DeWitt, spokesman for Nacht's campaign. "You would've though that someone who ran for Congress before and lost could raise more money, but instead he's at a three-to-one disadvantage.''

DeWitt said Nacht has offices in Battle Creek, Okemos, Farmington Hills and Ann Arbor, and that the advertising has led to several referrals for cases in and outside the district.

Munith farmer Sharon Renier, who beat multiple opponents for the Democratic nomination in the past two elections and intends to run again, said she's happy to have prospective opponents competing over dollars.

"So they're raising and spending money, good for them,'' she said. "I'm not wasting my time because (voters) won't care about what money was raised and from whom. They're gonna want someone who they know won't be bought off or is in it for the glory.''

And so it begins...

For the record, I really do like all three of them, and I think any of them can defeat Walberg in 2008. But this has me worried.

Let's try to keep things civil. As with all things, the way in which you say something matters just as much as what you say.

Anyone up for following the rule "If you can't say anything nice, don't say anything at all"?

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I will admit that I once worked for Senator Berryman. So some of you may think that this is very one sided but, I have to tell you that you should get to know the candidates before you make judgements. I have seen Mr. Nacht and said hello, but I really don't know him.
I can however, say that my personal knowledge of Senator Berryman is not second hand. I do not believe that I have ever met an individual with such compassion and caring for how one is treated by society, than that of Mr. Berryman. I have seen first hand how he treats those individuals that are in need. I have been there with him at 2:00 a.m. in the morning, when he has heard of people living outside in 17 degree's below weather and wanting to find them a place to stay.
We have all heard of politicians that talk a good game on there concerns for others. But, I have never seen anyone that consistantly puts his life on hold in order to help someone else, as I have Mr. Berryman. Yes, I have worked for Mr. Berryman, but that is because I have admired his dedication to making a difference. Even if that difference was to improve their circumstances for just that day.
I for one will not critize Ms. Renier or Mr. Nacht, or anyone else that gets into the race, and I would hope that you would hold your judgements on Mr. Berryman, until you have some first hand knowledge of just what kind of a person he really is.
I think the overall gist of fitzy's account is that he hopes the 7th District can have a civil campaign--no matter who is in the race. I didn't read "JUDGMENT" in his comments. He simply reiterated the statements made by both Jim and Nacht's spokesman, Chris DeWitt. And out of those statements, firzy experienced a bit understandable angst over the apparent "edginess" from both parties. He is simply yearning for an acrimonious-free campaign.

Is it possible?
No, it is not possible with Tim Walberg in the race. He will poison the waters with his vicious attacks.

Mr. Berryman knows this as they have been butting heads for years. I wouldn't worry about him, he has proven he can take it. Ms. Renier can handle the BS from Walberg and has a few lumps to show from her 06 race and she has proven she can give as well as she gets (see 04 and 06.)

Now, the question is, how does Mr. Nacht respond when he is attacked? Berryman is not the only person who "noticed" that David Nacht saves jobs. He saves them in the countryside of Calhoun and Lenawee counties. And, the coincidence of both billboards and radio ads appearing across the district, within weeks of his announcement, must have raised a red flag somewhere in his own organization. If it didn't, I'd be really suprised given his politically connected background.

I've made this point on this blog several times, but I do not believe Mr. Nacht, as a trial lawyer, has any chance of winning this seat in a general election. I think trial lawyers get a bad rap, I understand and believe in their place/ mission in society, and I personally do not think there is any good reason they should not hold office. But, the first time someone pastes a picture of Mr. Nacht alongside Geoffrey Feiger and puts that on a billboard, all the name recongnition in the world will not be able to overcome the negative association.

I think Mr. Nacht was simply trying to protect his business from the negative attention of a political campaign. But, in the world of politics, every action is an opportunity for your opponents to react. Mr. Berryman did not bring up the issue. He did react. I think the number one criticism in my mind, not that Nacht is a trial laywer, but his electability as a trial lawyer, is exacerbated by the billboards and radio spots from Nacht and Associates. I think Berryman was correct to point out the timing was strange, and I think Nacht should answer the question rather than brag about his huge fundraising quarter. Nacht rasied nearly as much out of trial lawyers and their employees than Berryman raised total.

I think Chris DeWitt should have address the real question head on and Nacht should be downplaying his law firm if he really hopes to win in November.
let the dialogue continue...

has nacht announced yet? I dont recall seeing anything official..
why is berryman even responding to this...unless he's concerned about nacht's viability
berryman cant have it both one commenter noted.either feiger is agin you or for you...
and a hoot...her comments are so funny...she poo poos all and says nothing of substance...

this race is shaping up to be a lively cartoon...
I can remind the anonymous poster who was the one that received money from Geoffrey Feiger it wasn't Nacht... how interesting?
There is no reason to worry about Jim Berryman creating a negative primary. That is not going to happen, end of story. He is focused on one thing--building a strong wave of support to crush Tim Walberg.

I haven't seen this issue brought up anywhere but here. It would probably be best if Walberg Watch did not fan the flames which I think it unintentionally might have done a little bit.

This is a great blog and none of us need to go there.
I haven't seen this issue brought up anywhere but here. It would probably be best if Walberg Watch did not fan the flames which I think it unintentionally might have done a little bit.

This is a great blog and none of us need to go there.

Well, I hope that I haven't accidentally created a negative primary. In my post, I was calling for people to remain civil, not start bashing each other.

And, I certainly wasn't trying to call out Jim Berryman for starting anything. He gave an interview, and said some things that the Nacht campaign responded to, and then Renier said some stuff too. By mentioning this, I wasn't trying to incite anger or blame anyone. I was just showing that this is how nasty primaries begin, and I don't want that.
I'm surprised to see Berryman in the race. Didn't he have an IRS tax problem?
"I'm surprised to see Berryman in the race. Didn't he have an IRS tax problem?

July 25, 2007 4:46 PM"

What a small-minded turd. I cannot believe a Walberg fanatic would even spend a second checking this website anymore. It shows how nervous they are that their Fearless, Fruitless Leader is vulnerable. Someone should let his staff know there are more important matters at hand, like making sure your boss votes for his own earmarks.

The wheels of the Tipton-Train are coming off and the first instinct is to spread a rumor to tear down their opponent. No debate on an issue. No dialogue on a vote. Just a sad attempt to revive a tired gutter tactic.
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