The gloves are definitely off in the 3rd District Congressional Race between Decmocratic challenger John Yarmuth ande Republican incumbent Anne Northup. The only thing that can stop these two campaigns from coming to blows is, well, the election Nov. 7.
Northup’s campaign, determined to take attention away from issues by attacking Yarmuth, has latched on to this silly minimum wage debate over Yarmuth’s ownership of southern BBQ restaurants. After running an attack ad on the topic for a week, Northup updated the ad to include the labeling of a WHAS-TV report as wrong, and saying that WAVE-TV and the Courier-Journal had it right. Yarmuth topped that with an ad that included a portion of a WHAS-TV report, a move that infuriated WHAS-TV management.
Both sides are wrong here, but like our attraction to reality TV and professional wrestling, the public apparently can’t turn away. Yarmuth, who introduced Bill Clinton at a Dem rally Tuesday night, should be using his TV time to promote that relationship, not defending his opponent’s attacks on this intergrity.
Northup’s tactics, unfortunately, are tried and true. If she can paint Yarmuth as a hypocrite, voters leaning his way will either vote for her or stay away from the polls. That her logic — he’s a hypocrite because he advocates raising the minimum wage while getting rich from employing minimum wage workers at his restaurants — might work is disturbing. What about her stance on the issue — she’s still against raising the wage, and that’s the bottom-line issue.
Voters who consider the minimum wage issue important should be looking at both candidates’ stances on the issue, and they’re pretty well documented to be on opposite ends of the spectrum, and make their decision based on that. Northup’s ad, at best, distorts the truth about Yarmuth’s restaurant holdings, but at worst presents a false view and diverts attention away from a position she’s apparently not proud of holding.