Things keep going downhill for

Things keep going downhill for Democrat Kathleen Kennedy Townsend’s Maryland gubernatorial campaign. The Washington Post reports that Townsend has had to fire a political consultant after the consultant vowed to portray Repulbican candidate Robert Ehrlich as a “Nazi” to African American voters. Actually, the consultant was simply articulating the standard winning Democratic strategy in Maryland. In 1998, the Maryland Democrats, directed by top party consultant and Al Gore adviser Bob Shrum, derailed Republican Ellen Sauerbrey by attacking her alleged racist voting in the Maryland state legislature. But the vote in question concerned legislation that had nothing to do with race; it was controversial “women’s” legislation that prominent black Democrats had also voted against. The smear campaign was later denounced by Baltimore’s black mayor, but not before Sauerbrey (who had narrowly lost the gubernatorial race in 1994 in an election that may have been stolen) saw her campaign sink like a stone. Playing the race card works in Maryland, and now that the offending consultant has been fired, don’t be surprised if his (and Shrum’s) strategy is duly implemented. It may be Townsend’s only hope.

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