LOVELY….This is a pretty shameful development in the South Dakota Senate race. It appears that someone–exactly who is a matter of heated dispute right now–has been sending out stickers that read, “Vote for Daschle & Vote for SODOMY.”

Gotta say, I see an outside chance that this little stunt hurts John Thune instead of the intended target. After all, the Thune campaign has been not-so-subtly whispering about Daschle’s position on gay marriage for a while now, to little or no effect. One reason is doesn’t stick is that in the 1990s, Daschle voted for the Defense of Marriage Act and against the Employment Non-Discrimination Act. Although those two stands bothered some of us who worked for him at the time, they make it pretty darn hard to paint him as a liberal on gay rights issues. And South Dakotans don’t react well to dirty politics. So far the race has been dead-even in large part because people genuinely like both of the guys–they’re just “Tom” and “John” to everyone. If one of them is seen as getting a little too Karl Rove-ish, that could hurt.

It’s worth pointing out that this latest mailing is just one reason why the Log Cabin Republicans are refusing to endorse John Thune. As my sister asked me last night, isn’t it time they changed their organization’s name to “Fiscally Conservative Gays”? And then took a look at the economic policies and records of the past ten years and discovered that there’s no good reason to stay in the Republican Party? Just asking.

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Amy Sullivan is a Chicago-based journalist who has written about religion, politics, and culture as a senior editor for Time, National Journal, and Yahoo. She was an editor at the Washington Monthly from 2004 to 2006.