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July 26, 2006
Democrats Abandoning Coleen Rowley?

When famed FBI whistleblower Coleen Rowley announced her candidacy against Rep. John Kline for Minnesota's second district, Democrats cheered her and swore to support her against the Republican incumbent. Unfortunately, Rowley has transformed from media darling to political incompetent, and now Roll Call reports that Democrats have quietly abandoned her to her own devices:

National and Minnesota Democrats seem about ready to walk away from Coleen Rowley’s ill-fated campaign to unseat Rep. John Kline (R-Minn.) — just as her campaign manager recently did.

Many in the party had hoped that Rowley's national fame — Time magazine named her Person of the Year in 2002 for being a whistle-blower at the FBI — would make her an exciting, appealing candidate in an otherwise Republican-leaning district. But now some state Democrats say Rowley's first run for political office is going so badly that they're turning their sights on damage control.

"She's running the single worst campaign that could be run," said one state Democratic insider. "I'm worried that if she's running a weak race in the 2nd it's going to hurt the statewide candidates. What's going to get people to turn out and vote Democratic?"

Her first mistake was getting into the race without any kind of platform in mind, other than a bad case of BDS. While Democrats burst with enthusiasm, most others wondered why Rowley thought she could go from a non-political job at the FBI to Congress on the strength of a Time Magazine cover. Political careers have been launched on less, though, and those of us in MN-02 watched with curiosity how Rowley would campaign in a strong Republican district.

As it turns out, badly. She drove a stake into the heart of her campaign almost immediately by having a photoshopped picture of Kilne in a Nazi uniform placed on her offical website. Kline, who served as an officer in the Marine Corps before his election to Congress, protested vociferously at the slight to himself and to his fellow Marines. She took the picture down off of the website but refused to apologize to Kline.

Even before that, Rowley associated herself with the far-Left nutcases that MN-02 residents rightly mistrust. Rowley just missed her chance to join Cindy Sheehan in Crawford last summer to join the anti-Bush circus. Rowley seemed very enthusiastic about her support of Sheehan, at least until Sheehan started falling in love with Hugo Chavez and claimed that the Bush administration was the biggest terrorist organization in the world. Rowley never did address Sheehan's wackier public statements, and has scrubbed Sheehan almost completely from her site.

Rowley has turned into an embarrassment for all Minnesotans, and the rational voters of MN-02 has a clear choice in November: support an incumbent who has proven his mettle on the battlefield and in Congress, or vote for a far-Left nutcase that thinks Nazi allegations are amusing and that Cindy Sheehan represents rationality. Given that choice, no wonder Democrats have decided to ignore Rowley.

UPDATE: The Influence Peddler picked this up about the same time I did , and has more thoughts.

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Posted by Ed Morrissey at July 26, 2006 10:50 AM

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