Gubernatorial candidates slinging mud

Published 12:00 am Wednesday, May 15, 2002

It seem our gubernatorial candidates are eager to sling mud during this

campaign year.

While Charles Bishop already took that analogy to an extreme with his

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"mudwrestling" television commercial, the Democratic candidate isn’t alone.

Republican candidates Bob Riley and Steve Windom both have tossed more than a

few barbs at each other, with their high-profile squabble earning a rebuke

from the state GOP leadership.

Now, Bishop is back in the ring, so to speak. The sitting Agriculture

Commissioner is running a television ad that mocks a newscast in which a

reporter is speculating if Gov. Don Siegelman will be indicted based on the

results of a joint federal and state investigation of the Siegelman


While we won’t know the results of the investigation for several months –

the Ethics Commission indicated Tuesday it will likely have a decision by

Sept. 1 – Bishop’s ad takes the case to the next level, and comes

dangerously close to some ethical lines.

We suspect Siegelman and Bishop will air their differences, and trade their

barbs, in high-profile style. And, while realize that all’s fair in love and

politics during an election year, we can’t help but be discouraged by the

continuing decline of issue-oriented campaigning.

Taxpayers and voters in Alabama deserve the candidates’ respect, and they

deserve campaigns that provide information and insight into a candidate’s

issues and stands.

Unfortunately, the only insight most of us will draw from the mudslinging

campaigns is the reassurance that we just can’t respect a politician and

hopeful leader who’s more concerned with slinging mud than addresses his


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