The most active bloggers on the left believe that there is some right wing conspiracy to "swift boat" or "bork" Louis Butler in the state Supreme Court race. The dyspeptic Mike Plaisted who regularly calls people he disagrees with "wing-nuts," "slugs," "deranged," "beasts," and "those without souls", is just mortified by the tone of the race. You'd think it'd be right up his alley.
But, it turns out, these right-wing "hatemongers" have been generally critical of the Gableman ad. Sykes "flew a flag" on it and I made clear that I thought it was unfair and that, if I were part of the Gableman campaign (sorry, Mike, call me a liar when you lack a shred of evidence, but I'm not), I would have strongly counselled against it. Earlier, I said that I did not like an ad critical of Butler ran by the Coalition For America's Families. I have tried to point out when I think the public discussion of cases by both sides is inaccurate.
Others have been critical as well.
I have not, not have others, fallen all overselves to call it "racist." I understand the frisson that arises from declaring someone else's moral deficiency (and claiming, by implication, your own superiority), but I gave it up for Lent.
In any event, I am hard pressed to find one commentator on the political left who has had one thing to say about ads critical of Gableman that even the WJCIC thinks crossed the line. You've got to admire the team discipline.
In a further irony, both of the lead-off ads from the campaigns themselves (as opposed to the nefarious third parties whose ads are somehow supposed to be "phony") are troubling. Gableman's ad suggests that there is something wrong with being a defense lawyer. Butler's ad suggests that it is the role of the courts to rule against businesses who he claims "poison" people (in the event, of course, the jury decided that the plaintiff wasn't poisoned) and for widows and children as a matter of "right vs. wrong."
One could, I suppose, say that the ads are just aggressive statements of defensible positions expressed in a vigorous (even Plaistedian) way. Judge Gableman wants to adopt a less expansive view of the rights of criminal defendants. Justice Butler wants to craft the common law or read statutes more stringently against businesses that he believes are engaged - or are likely to engage - in wrongdoing.
Or, less charitably, one could say that they misstate the role of the courts as an "ally" in the fight on crime or as a "watchdog" on business.
But, so far, its the "right wing noise machine" that has looked critically at both sides.