Seeking any advantage in their effort to retain control of Congress, Democrats are working behind the scenes in a number of tight races to bolster long-shot third-party candidates who have platforms at odds with the Democratic agenda but hold the promise of siphoning Republican votes. . . .
In California, Republicans have received recorded phone calls from a professed but unidentified “registered Republican” who says she is voting for the American Independent Party’s candidate for a House seat, Bill Lussenheide, not for the incumbent Republican, Mary Bono Mack.
The caller says she is voting that way because “it’s time we show Washington what a true conservative looks like.”
The recording was openly paid for by the Democratic candidate for the seat, Mayor Steve Pougnet of Palm Springs.
A group backing Harry Reid has paid for a radio ad “advertisement promoting the Senate campaign of a “Tea Party of Nevada” candidate, Scott Ashjian“:
Nevada is one of several states, including Florida, where “Tea Party” political committees have appeared on ballot lines without the knowledge or support of leading Tea Party activists, who have generally chosen not to support third-party candidacies. In most of those cases, local bloggers, reporters and lawyers have traced connections to local Democrats, drawing lawsuits, complaints and, in a couple of cases, admissions of involvement.
Guess Democrats realize their ideas aren’t resonating this year and in order to win, need to play to those that do.