Monday | September 15, 2003
Chris Lehane is history
You knew it was coming.
Kerry communications director Chris Lehane has resigned from the Kerry campaign.
John Kerry's communications director has resigned over differences in the direction of the Democrat's presidential campaign.
Chris Lehane's departure comes amid speculation of a wider shake-up in the Kerry campaign, which has been torn by internal fights and a lack of public support from the candidate.
Can campaign manager Jim Jordan be far behind?
The official line is that Lehane wanted Kerry to move more aggressively against Dean. True or not, Lehane is an asshole. Many have documented his blatantly unfair attacks on Bradley as Gore's campaign mouthpiece in 2000, such as this piece:
Lehane more than exemplifies spin-he lives it, he celebrates it, he worships it. At Gore events, Lehane relentlessly bends, manipulates, dodges or obliterates the truth [...]
The questions turned to campaign finance reform. For weeks, the Gore camp had been dumping on Bradley's call for extensive reform. In December, on Meet the Press, Gore had said, "I have fought for this for 20 years. Bill went 17 years in the U.S. Senate before he ever sponsored a campaign finance reform bill. Only after announcing his retirement and heading out to run for president did he sponsor a bill on this."
Two days before the New Hampshire election, former Labor Secretary Robert Reich, a Bradley supporter, had read to reporters in Concord a statement written by Fred Wertheimer, a leading reform advocate in Washington. "Vice President Gore's statements about Bradley and his campaign finance reform record are not true," Wertheimer declared. He noted that Bradley had sponsored several different reform bills.
Wertheimer also observed that "Gore's own public track record over the years does not reveal him to be a 'fighter' for campaign finance reform."
So what about it, Chris? we asked Lehane. "Bill Bradley went over 6000 days [in the Senate] without authoring a piece of [reform] legislation," he replied, ignoring Gore's accusation that Bradley had not sponsored reform legislation. But, we answered, Wertheimer says you're wrong.
"Bill Bradley went over 6000 days without authoring a piece of legislation," he repeated. But, we shot back, Wertheimer says he sponsored a host of bills. "Bill Bradley went over 6000 days without authoring a piece of legislation," he said again. Wait a minute, I added, we all know that in Congress authoring legislation is not the only way of promoting an issue. Often a committee chairman authors the bill and other lawmakers work hard as cosponsors. "Bill Bradley went over 6000 days without authoring a piece of legislation," he countered.
Like I said, Lehane's an asshole. The Kerry campaign is better off without him.
Now let's hope for Clark's sake that Lehane doesn't end up in that campaign.
Posted September 15, 2003 11:55 AM | Comments (54)