I enjoy rough-and-tumble politics. I don't mind negative or even nasty politics. But if it is, I expect it to be honest and forthright. If you call your opponent an embezzler or a womanizer, have facts and documentation to back up the accusation. Otherwise, don't do it and pollute the political process.
In the 2007 elections, I have seen a fair share of negative advertising. Some of it was in the GOP race for Lt. Governor. Other negative advertising is the Democratic runoff for Hinds County District Attorney. I had--and have--no objections to that negative campaigning. They base it on facts and even give sources for their facts.
But Todd Brand's advertisement against Mike Sumrall hit a real low. The two candidates are in a runoff for the Democratic nomination for State Auditor. It has an unflattering photo of Mike Sumrall stating he (or some other organization) had a phone bank stating he was black and a member of the NAACP. ( It came on ABC Channel 16 on Saturday night around 11PM.) Also, it hinted some secret contributor(s) was(were) financing these phone banks for Sumrall.
That is a hoot! Sumrall is not black and he is not a member of the NAACP. Also, he has no secret contributors or someone financing his campaign. Brand is not qualified to be State Auditor so he is using personal attacks on Sumrall rather than attacking Sumrall's qualifications. Brand may be a good college administrator but that does not give him the ability to run the OSA. Does Brand know anything about what it takes to perform a successful audit? Mike Sumrall sure does. Also, Sumrall has been timely in filing his campaign financial reports. Brand was late. Who do you think would do a better job in a timely fashion?
What stunned me was Brand's praising Phil Bryant's management of the OSA. He has not read the PEER report and other reports strongly criticizing Bryant's management of the office. If Brand is that ignorant of what is going on in the OSA (Hey Brand. What about the 88% turnover in the OSA office? Would you call that good management?), he does not need to be State Auditor.
If Mike Sumrall is the Democratic nominee, I'll do all I can to help him. If Brand wins the nomination, I'll vote for Republican Stacy Pickering. Neither Pickering or Brand is qualified to be State Auditor. But at least Pickering isn't a fool or a vicious campaigner.
Tomorrow, let's do the State of Mississippi a service and take politics out of the State Auditor's office. Please vote for Mike Sumrall for State Auditor in the runoff Democratic primary.