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For one GOP candidate, the war that dare not speak its name

While the faltering economy has taken center stage in Campaign ’08, Iraq has fallen so far that the Republican hoping to succeed Congressman Jim Ramstad doesn’t even mention it on his campaign website.

A search for the word “Iraq” turned up zero hits on Third District GOP endorsee Erik Paulsen’s site. The omission is striking, since the DFL endorsee Ashwin Madia doesn’t shy away from referencing his Iraq War service as a Marine captain working on the country’s legal system, or offering his prescription to end the conflict.

Iraq War = zero hits on Erik Paulsen's campaign site
Iraq War = zero hits on Erik Paulsen’s campaign site

“It wasn’t a conscious decision to leave it out,” Paulsen political director Ann Mason says of Iraq. “We’re highlighting five or six issues, and as the campaign progresses, we’ll get more specific.”

Paulsen’s current web statement on matters military is nearly tautological, repeating — but not defining — the phrase “strong national defense”

“I can’t stress enough the post-9/11 challenges of providing America with a strong national defense,” the virtual Paulsen states. “Today we are confronted with a very real enemy who hates all that America stands for. I support a strong national defense to confront this enemy.”

With five months before Election Day, the candidate still has time to firm things up a bit.

Comments (3)

  1. Submitted by Tony Wagner on 06/03/2008 - 12:24 pm.

    The site barely even mentions he’s running as a Republican.

  2. Submitted by Bill Krause on 06/04/2008 - 10:05 pm.

    Search Madia’s position paper and website for the word “immigration”

    Zip, Zilch, Nada….

  3. Submitted by Tommy Johnson on 06/03/2008 - 12:34 pm.

    No offense, but fellow blogger Big E at MnBlue had essentially this same post almost two months ago:

    The title of Big E’s post?

    “Iraq does not exist for Erik Paulsen”, with the exact same screen shot.

    I remember the day Erik Paulsen first door knocked me, back in 1994. And I think everyone needs to remember that since that day, I cannot ever remember a public event held by Erik Paulsen.

    Oh, he goes to local events like Corn Feed, etc etc etc.

    But I cannot ever remember Erik Paulsen holding a Town Hall type event.


    Just like the Iraq War, there are somethings Erik just does not want to address – like unpopular issues, and voters that don’t abide.

    DAVID BRAUER REPLIES: Didn’t see Eric’s post, but I’m glad he’s getting credit for it here. Interesting that Paulsen hasn’t fixed it in two months.

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