I still don't have any information about Congressman Leonard Boswell's internal polling, and six weeks before the June 3 primary, there are still no public polls on this race. However, it's notable that the Boswell campaign has sent out a negative direct-mail piece focusing on Ed Fallon's support for Ralph Nader's 2000 presidential campaign.
My husband and I received the latest mailing today. Most of the text is in a bizarre font, in which the letters are not aligned properly and each letter looks as if a tiny piece has been broken off or torn away. The effect is to make the text look unstable, somewhat like a ransom note.
I know nothing about graphic design and have no idea what this kind of font is called. For lack of a better term, I'm calling it the "scary font" in this post.
After the jump I've described the visuals and transcribed the text of this mailer.
Most of Boswell's campaign materials are four pages long, but this one is on both sides of just one legal-size sheet.
Side one has a large color photo of Ralph Nader on the right hand side. The following sentence is in the scary font, in large type:
In 2000, Ralph Nader said, "there's NO difference between Al Gore and George Bush..."
The bolded words are in Hawkeye gold, and the rest of the text is white.
Underneath these words are smaller color photos of Al Gore and George W. Bush. Below that there is contact information for the Boswell campaign and "Paid for by Boswell for Congress."
On the other side is the same photo of Ralph Nader, only this time it's in black and white with a large black-and-white photo of a smiling Ed Fallon next to it. The following text takes up most of the page:
Ed Fallon believed him.
Fallon helped elect George Bush
by endorsing and actively
campaigning for Ralph Nader.
Now, Fallon claims he's a real Democrat we can trust.
With nearly 4,000 of our soldiers killed in Iraq, rampant corruption throughout our government, health care costs out of control and an economy in shambles, Ed Fallon's support for Ralph Nader is unforgivable.
Enough phony politics.
Say NO to ED FALLON.
The first sentence and the last two sentences are in the scary font. The bolded words are in Hawkeye gold, and the rest of the words are black.
There's a little footnote symbol next to Ralph Nader's name, and at the bottom of the page, in small print, there's a footnote citing the Des Moines Register, 1/25/01, 11/18/00 and 10/31/00.
On one level, it takes chutzpah for Boswell, who voted for key elements of George Bush's agenda in Congress, to say Fallon's actions are unforgivable.
But we all know that Nader's name evokes an emotional reaction among many Democrats, and supporting Nader was the biggest mistake Fallon has made in his political career.
Will this kind of campaign communication convince enough of them to use their vote on June 3 to punish Fallon, rather than hold Boswell accountable for enabling of Bush?