If you recall last spring's primary campaign in the 26th Congressional District, one of the unfortunate hallmarks was the cartoon-like mailers sent by the Democratic Congressional Campaign Committee attacking independent Linda Parks.
Now that the general election campaign has begun, it appears that the Republican National Congressional Committee is determined not to be out-cartooned.Welcome, Ventura County, to the simple-mindedness of Washington, D.C.-based partisan politics.
But there is nothing cartoonish about the amount of money the RNCC has already spent on the race. In reports filed with the Federal Elections Commission last week, the political arm of the GOP congressional caucus reported $430,000 in unspecified "media" buys and another $17,000 in polling, all categorized as in opposition to 26th District Democratic candidate Julia Brownley. That puts Brownley at No. 10 on the RNCC's list of Democratic House candidates nationwide it has gone after so far.
In a web ad released today, the RNCC treats us to cutout images of Brownley darting into train stations, footage of choo-choo trains rolling down the tracks and an announcer doing an amateurish impression of a train conductor. High-brow stuff, in the same league as mailers with cutout photos of Parks sitting in a convertible alongside cutout photos of Dick Cheney and Sarah Palin (which is the stuff we saw in the spring from the Democrats).
The ad criticizes Brownley for her vote this summer to authorize the issuance of the first round of $10 billion in voter-approved bonds to finance a high-speed rail project in California that is ultimately designed to connect the Los Angeles Basin with the San Francisco Bay Area. It calls high-speed rail "the $68 billion dollar train California can't afford," and concludes: "Julia Brownley, running us off the tracks."