While Heidi Heitkamp spent this week campaigning with a man who let North Dakota down, Kevin Cramer has strong support from North Dakota veterans and military members.
Heidi Heitkamp’s out-of-touch national security stances have left North Dakota veterans and military service members worse off.
Heitkamp has a long list of bad votes, harmful positions, and grave errors in judgment on foreign policy, such as:
Supporting Obama’s Iran nuclear deal.
Opposing forcing Iran to recognize Israel and release American hostages.
Rejecting the use of military force to take down Assad in Syria.
Flip-flopping on withdrawing troops from Afghanistan.
Standing against military officials who called for increased missile defense funding.
Failing to help arm those fighting ISIS.
On the brink of defeat, Heidi Heitkamp’s campaign isn’t holding back from attacking anyone they want, including a WWII veteran who requested that Heitkamp stop using his image without his consent.
Facing backlash, Heitkamp’s Communications Director called that story “wrong and gutter politics at its worst.”
LET’S BE CLEAR: In this campaign, “gutter politics at its worst” is only embodied by Heidi Heitkamp, whose campaign has exploited veterans, sexual assault survivors, and whoever else she can for political gain.
Heitkamp Staffer Accuses WWII Veteran of “Gutter Politics”
Yesterday I wrote a post about Lynn Aas, a WWII veteran who received the Legion of Honor award from France last year, who objected to Senator Heidi Heitkamp bragging about her attendance at that event on her Facebook page.
“Lynn is not happy that Heidi did this. We have posted a comment requesting that it be taken down,” David Aas, Lynn’s son, told me in an email. “Lynn wants to make it clear that no one from the Heitkamp campaign contacted him to ask for permission for this, and he does not want this to be viewed as an endorsement of her campaign.”
I reached out to Heitkamp’s staff for comment yesterday, but as is typical for them they didn’t respond to me. They did respond to Fox News, however, when the news network picked up my story. Their statement characterized Aas’ objection to the use of his image by the Senator as “gutter politics.”
“This story is wrong and is gutter politics at its worst. A link to a local news article was posted on Sen. Heitkamp’s Senate Facebook page about a ceremony she participated in last year for a WWII veteran to highlight a recognition he earned. An individual photo was not posted. The way social media works is that if you post a link to an article, the photo in the article also shows up in the post. Let’s talk about facts rather than distortions or political games. We took the post of the article down after the veteran’s son asked us to via Facebook,” said Abbie McDonough, Heitkamp’s U.S. Senate communications director.
“In fact, at the event, Mr. Aas joked with Sen. Heitkamp that he liked her, but isn’t going to vote for her. They both shared a laugh, and she retold the story at the event. In North Dakota, you can still recognize the service of an honorable man from a different political party without playing politics. Sen. Heitkamp will continue to work to make sure all veterans have the support, resources, and recognition they deserve and earned – despite others playing politics with our nation’s veterans,” she added.
I’m gobsmacked that Senator Heitkamp’s staff would attack Mr. Aas like this. The objection to the use of his image, and his story, in Heitkamp’s post came from him. I didn’t solicit it. I wasn’t even aware of his objection until his family alerted me to it.
And it wasn’t just that Heitkamp (or, more accurately, her staff) posted a link to a local news story which auto-populated with Aas’ image. It’s that they used Aas’ story, and his name, as well as his image in the heat of a campaign and at a moment when Heitkamp has been touring the state touting her record on veterans’ issues.
Aas didn’t want to be a part of that messaging. He should get to say that without being attacked by Heitkamp’s staff.
STATEMENTS: North Dakota Veterans and Sen. Ben Sasse (NE) Criticize Chuck Hagel, Offer Strong Support for Cramer
Ret. General Mike Haugen:
Heidi Heitkamp has a well-deserved deficit in the polls after she outed victims of sexual assault without their consent, continued to campaign rather than apologize, then lied about it.
Now to save what for weeks has been the most vulnerable Senate campaign in the country, Heitkamp is continuing her apparent requirement that all surrogates be irrelevant Trump-bashing politicians, bringing former Defense Secretary Chuck Hagel to North Dakota:
LET’S BE CLEAR— Chuck Hagel has an anti-Israel, pro-Iran record, and was Defense Secretary as ISIS surged to power in the Middle East. Pro-Israel groups have been campaigning against Heitkamp this cycle, and today she is reminding them why.
“While Kevin Cramer gains support from North Dakota veterans, Heidi Heitkamp is campaigning with a man who let them down,” said North Dakota Republican Party Communications Director Jake Wilkins. “Hagel was dismissed from from this last position for doing a poor job, an experience he and Heitkamp will have in common after this November.”
His record stands in stark contrast with Heidi Heitkamp’s long list of bad votes, harmful positions, and grave errors in judgment on foreign policy.
REMINDER– Heidi Heitkamp:
- Voted repeatedly to support and defend Obama’s Iran nuclear deal.
- Opposed forcing Iran to recognize Israel and release American hostages.
- Wanted Obama’s ‘Russian Reset’ but called Russia an ‘Existential Threat’ under President Trump.
- Rejected the use of military force to take down Assad in Syria.
- Flip-flopped on withdrawing troops from Afghanistan.
- Stood against military officials who called for increased missile defense funding.
- Supported Freedom Act provisions that weakened intelligence community tools.
- Resisted moves to arm those fighting ISIS.
- Voted against the Ambassador to Israel’s nomination.
- Aligned with J Street, a liberal advocacy group used to oppose Israeli leaders.
- Called ‘hyper-partisanship’ our greatest internal vulnerability while continuing partisan attacks on her opponents.
“Heidi Heitkamp’s out-of-touch national security stances have left North Dakota veterans and military service members worse off,” said North Dakota Republican Party spokesman Jake Wilkins. “North Dakota’s veterans and active duty service-members deserve a strong leader like Kevin Cramer who will fight for them in the Senate.”
Not only is this group’s attack so weak and desperate that they were fact-checked in their own pitched story, but they have already shown themselves as out-of-touch with North Dakota voters, wildly accusing President Trump of treason just last week:
“VoteVets’ involvement is nothing more than another sign that out-of-touch, liberal groups are worried about losing their friend and ally Heidi Heitkamp,” said North Dakota Republican Party spokesman Jake Wilkins. “Kevin Cramer is running on his actual record of support for our nation’s veterans and our military. Heitkamp’s team clearly can’t do the same.”