This year candidates Carl Demaio and Scott Peters are both running for the 52nd Congressional District position for Washington D.C. and seem to be running their advertisement campaigns by any means necessary to win – even if that means involving slander in their ads.
Over the past few weeks, media has focused mainly on openly gay Republican Carl Demaio, due to the sexual harassment charges he faced by former staff member Todd Bosinch in early October (which have now been dropped), and other questionable sexual harassment incidents that happened in 2009. But for Demaio these accusations have not affected his supporters nor the slight lead that he carries over Democratic party member Scott Peters.
Yet Demaio is not the only one being accused, Peter’s has also been accused by Demaio for being the organizer of an office break in and the stealing of his campaign strategy book – along with the support of slandering Demaio’s name during the sexual harassment investigation.
Both parties have participated in television advertisements that slander the opposite party, which has created a ‘he said, she said’ aura surrounding the campaign which is undoubtably great for entertainment but does no justice for the moral image of Demaio or Peters.
“I do think it’s okay for both of them to use social media because if there is truth in what they are saying, then everyone should know” said junior Angelique Scherbarth.
And with all the scandals spreading there is a lack of knowledge of the actual propositions that each candidate preposed for future reform in the congressional district. Little has actually been mentioned about Demaio’s “No budget, No Pay – For Real” act that will stop the payment to congressmen who do not do their jobs, and Peter’s Federal Student Loan Refinancing Act, which will lower all federal student loans. Due to this and the amount of trash talking going on in ads, the running comes off as more of a reality television show than a political race.
Influential voters can be swayed by the hearsay depicted in these advertisements, and is possibly what Peters and Demaio want but is not what many voters need. Spreading rumors or openly speaking against competitors should not be allowed in any running and should be viewed as childish. Being a ‘good sport’ during competitions goes beyond the athletic world – respect of another parties views, person or beliefs is something that should be front and center in anyone who plans on joining politics.