ANOTHER REPUBLICAN, ANOTHER CHICKEN, ANOTHER COSTLY MISTAKE…. Lately, when we think of Republican campaigns making chicken-related mistakes, we think of Nevada’s Sue Lowden, who suggested trading poultry for medical care made sense. The comments likely cost Lowden the race.
Now, Republicans have another chicken-related controversy to worry about.
The first line of Ohio Gov. Ted Strickland’s campaign biography boasts the Democratic governor is “the son of a steelworker” who “never imagined he’d be able to go to college.”
Indeed, Strickland’s humble upbringing is just the type campaigns love to highlight, and never more so during an economic climate that still hasn’t shown signs for recovery for many Ohioans.
But the campaign of Strickland’s Republican opponent — former U.S. Rep. John Kasich — is causing a stir for attacking the same simple origins Strickland celebrates.
Kasich spokesman Rob Nichols said in a statement Tuesday Strickland is a poor manager of Ohio’s cities because the Democrat was raised “in a chicken shack on Duck Run.”
As if that weren’t enough, the Kasich campaign also mocked Strickland’s modest upbringing the day before, saying the governor doesn’t care about urban areas because he was raised “in a chicken shack on Duck Run.”
Is this really where the Republican campaign wants to go? After John Kasich left Congress, he split time between Fox News and Lehman Brothers … and now his campaign wants to insult the governor based on his modest upbringing?
DNC Chairman Tim Kaine appeared in Cleveland today, and defended Strickland: “I noticed that the other campaign yesterday ridiculed him for ‘growing up in a chicken shack on Duck Run Ohio.’ I don’t know why they thought that’s a bad thing, but maybe that’s how it looks from the perspective of a Lehman Brothers consultant.”
In the 21st century, it’s rare, even for wealthy Republicans, to go out of their way to run a pro-elitist statewide campaign. It’s curious move for a candidate whose polls seem to be moving in the wrong direction, and we’ll see if this strategy works out well for Kasich.
Postscript: It looks like Kasich’s campaign spokesperson apologized this afternoon, saying his mockery of the governor’s upbringing wasn’t meant “pejoratively.”