It’s standard fare for candidates.
Appear on a local radio show. Have friendlies call in. Answer the softballs and get your message out, but expect a few nasty blows to the body.
That’s the way its supposed to be.
But not for poor Jonathan Chane, one of two Democrats running in the open congressional seat being vacated by Patrick Murphy. Apparently Chane’s people (Does he even HAVE people?) didn’t know that you don’t leave your candidate alone in the ring. You put forth the effort to throw in a few jabs that play to your strengths.
So Chane goes on the local KC Ingram show on Tuesday — he probably had notes with him — which is a local AM radio show out of Stuart and a relatively friendly/engaging program. While Ingram is herself right of center, she has a way of allowing her guests the appropriate level of discourse and a nice amount of give-and-take. Good show. Neutral venue (unless you support All Aboard Florida, of course.)
So let’s go to the phones …
And then the face-beating began. Call after call came in and just went after poor (and unprepared) Chane, hitting him for everything from working for Big Tobacco to throwing people out of their homes as a foreclosure lawyer.
Chane did the best he could to block the blows, but after listeners heard the tone and with Chane on his heels, it’s hard to know where the pre-planned calls ended and the tribal behavior began. He even tried the “I didn’t just represent tobacco, and I didn’t just represent banks in foreclosures, I had a lot of clients” but the callers just weren’t buying it. (Hint: Saying you did something people don’t like because you are a lawyer — and that’s what lawyers do— really isn’t the best defense ever.)
After a series of nasties, Chane tried to turn the tables and lobbed a well-worn attack on his primary opponent, self-funder Randy Perkins, about giving money to Republicans. As he was clearly coming off the mat to face a standing 8-count, with swollen eyes and a hint of blood on his lip, he offered, “I don’t relish in it, but it is critical we know who we are electing to Congress.”
Yes it is, Mr. Chane. Yes it is.