BethlehemDem reports that, even though he and his wife have lived in Lehigh County for the past two years, they still got an anonymous robo call over the dinner hour telling them NOT to vote for Peg Ferraro. In fact, Peg got a call herself, and was surprised to learn she voted to increase taxes a gazillion per cent. One of Peg's close friends, who has never even voted, has already called Peg to yell at her.
In Ron Angle country, things are even worse. So far, he's been nailed with at least eight robo calls, all coming from the same number, 484-548-6400, being used against Peg. He's been accused of everything, from being a serial shoplifter to human sacrifices. In addition to the robocalls, he's being slammed with slime mailers. Some are being paid for by his opponent, while others come from Joe Long's Democratic machine. Angle tells me the negative campaign against him is the "worst piece of garbage and filth I've seen yet." He estimates at least $60,000 has been spent to unseat him.
Ferraro and Angle's opponents are both using the same political consultant - Tom Severson, the Darth Vader of Politics. Severson is noted for this type of stupid anonymous smear. He just used that tactic last May to smear magisterial candidate Brian Monahan. That one blew up in Vader's face. “The Force is strong with this one.”
Dirty politics usually backfires. I saw that first-hand last week, during the Debate at the State. Bertsch was holding his own until he started to smear Panto. You could hear the audience groan in disgust the moment Bertsch went to the dark side.
Smear tactics also hurt people. Peg, a class act, recently suffered the sudden loss of her husband. She doesn't need to be kicked right now. And although Ron won't admit it, he hates to see how this bothers his wife and sons. But we're the real losers. This type of campaigning is precisely why many good people won't run. And it's why many other good people don't even bother to vote. It's bad for democracy.
Next week, I'm doing have to fill you in on those county council races. Does anyone know where Tony Branco is? He was MIA during yesterday's budget hearing, a hell of a way to serve the county. How's that Democratic machine working out for John ("I come from the corporate culture") Maher? Stay tuned.