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Political notes from Free Press staff writers Terri Hallenbeck, Sam Hemingway and Nancy Remsen



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New TV ads over the weekend from Bernie Sanders in the U.S. Senate race. New TV ad starting today from Peter Welch in the U.S. House race. See them here and here:

Now, I would not want to suggest that TV ads are the end-all-and-be-all of an election. We all know that newspaper articles fill that role. TV (and radio) ads do, however, offer a glimpse at the image the candidates are trying to create and the message they’re trying to deliver. Plus, they are beemed into people's living rooms (and kitchen and barns), making them sometimes the most direct look an ordinary Vermonter has of the candidates.

So blogworld, what do you think of the new ads? Neither mentions his opponent or his opponent’s stances, but both campaigns, separate from the ads, made it clear the ads are targeting what they see as a shortcoming of their opponents.

Are these the issues that will grab voters – the war in Iraq in Welch’s case and the outsourcing of jobs in Sanders’ case?

- Terri Hallenbeck

Jobs and the War in Iraq are two of the most important issues to voters. I think it is smart (and the right thing to do) for the candidates to offer clear stances on these issues.
Bernie's isolationist screeching is a joke.
A joke with a 64% approval rating.
Thank you Bernie. Thank you for doing ads that say what you stand for. Thank you for not spending money on trying to distort the positions of your opponent.
"A joke with a 64% approval rating."

Surprise surprise, 64% of Vermonters don't understand the global economy. I'd be surprised if 64% had ever left the state.
One, Sanders understands global ecomony better than Tarrant ever will. Two, not even the combo of Ads and Newspaper articles are the end all be all for elections. People should look at voting histories of the candidates and the debates as well. Although I know reporters try hard, but hearing the candidates speak about the issues first hand plays an important role. As we know sometimes, ideas and words are lost in translation, even with fast note taking and tape recorders.
It is shocking to read that there is someone who really believes that 64% of Vermonters are just plain ignorant and lack exposure to life outside the state. That's an extremely elitist view of why Tarrant's campaign isn't catching on.

But it explains a lot. What do you do to get ignorant homebodies to vote your way? Feed them fear. Misrepresent your opponent's record in the most awful terms like "Child molesters. Thanks, Bernie." Now, apparently, it is some folks' view that we are too dumb even for those tactics to work.

Here's the secret: Don't tell Tarrant and his folks, but they completely misunderestimated (as our President would say) we Vermonters. Completely. It's a shame. All that money spent on false assumptions. Makes me think he wouldn't be much of a Senator.
"Sanders understands global ecomony better than Tarrant ever will."

A guy who ran a huge international company for decades knows less about the global economy than a guy who has never had a real job? Don't you people have any concern whatsoever for how ridiculous you sound when you say things like this?
Bernie has had real jobs. He was a highly successful mayor of our largest city, he has been a real Congressman for 16 years. Tarrant has been hocking software to hospitals, which he says makes him an expert on health care.

Bernie has been in graduate school on the global economy through his work in Congress while Tarrant spent decades feathering his own substantial nest(s). It's fine to be rich. But success at getting rich is not necessarily great preparation for representing Vermont in the Senate. If it was, we'd have Senator McMullen. What you might characterize as a ridiculous old Vermont farmer beat him. Tarrant is beating himself.
Tarrant's been selling software to hospitals, which makes him an expert at the health care industry, and, namely, the high administrative costs that can be cut down drastically through streamlining and increasing the use of technology.

And Bernie has had a job, as a professional politician. He knows what people want to hear, and so he says it. And, he gets elected. But when it comes down to it, he fails to live up to his own ideals (not taking any money from corporate PACs? Don't worry about it - it's an election year.) He's spoonfed information by special interests in DC, who fly him around the world to various places, all so they hope he'll vote their way. Then they give money to his campaign. These special interests aren't stupid - they know money spent on a candidate is an investment, and they wouldn't be donating if they didn't know they'd get something in return. But how do these interests invest in someone who can finance his or her own campaign? Well, they don't, and, if that person's elected, America's a better place for it.
"Bernie has been in graduate school on the global economy through his work in Congress"

You're just doing a parody of an ignorant Bernie supporter, right?
"Tarrant has been hocking software to hospitals, which he says makes him an expert on health care."

Not only that, while he was on FAHC board, IDX was negotiating a $9 million software deal with FAHC.

The man has no ethics....well thats obvious.
I love coming on here and reading 48 million posts of the Sanders for Senate Office argueing with the Tarrant for Sanders Office. You all need to get girlfriends/boyfriends and get a life.
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