Desperate Bills campaign blasted for calling Klobuchar "prom queen," "daddy's little girl"

The Strib's poll suggests you could double the number of Bills backers in MN... and Amy would still win.
The Strib's poll suggests you could double the number of Bills backers in MN... and Amy would still win.

According to a Star Tribune poll conducted by Mason-Dixon, Republican Kurt Bills trails incumbent U.S. Senator Amy Klobuchar by a comical margin.

Conducted last week, the poll found that 57 percent of of likely voters plans to vote for Klobuchar, compared to 28 percent for Bills. In other words, Klobuchar is more than doubling up her Republican challenger. Furthermore, 60 percent of the 800 likely voters surveyed don't even know who Bills is! Ouch. (Bills' internal polling shows him trailing by a less ghastly margin of 15 percent.)

-- Amy Klobuchar "surprised" after Kurt Bills throws Bush tax cuts under the bus [VIDEO]
-- Dave Wellstone calls Kurt Bills' homage to his father "completely disrespectful"

Bills has already received a lot of criticism from both the left and right for running a shoddy campaign. Now, he's under renewed fire for issuing two press releases this week that use sexist and derogatory language to describe Klobuchar.

The first release, published Monday, basically blasts the media for not asking Klobuchar tougher questions about her congressional record. Because, you know, blasting the media is the most effective way to get journalists to cover you more favorably.

From the release (emphasis mine):

"It's time to hold Washington politicians accountable. It's time for the Minnesota media to hold Klobuchar accountable. Perhaps even ask her an uncomfortable question or two, and not just blindly accept her spin," said Mike Osskopp, campaign manager for the Kurt Bills campaign.

"The media has been AWOL during this campaign. It's as if they are pretending that Klobuchar is not running for reelection. She has a record, and should be held accountable for it," said Osskopp.

"The media is giving Klobuchar a pass. Where are the tough questions? Where are the follow-ups? Who has asked Amy about why she supports a budget deficit plan that just about everybody else believes is a potential economic calamity, regardless of ideology? Where is her plan for the economy, the middle east, or entitlement reform?"

"Klobuchar is a Senator, not a Prom Queen," Osskopp concluded.

Yesterday, in the wake of the Strib poll, the Bills campaign upped the ante. The crux of the issue was the party identifications of people surveyed. From the Strib:

The Minnesota Poll of 800 likely voters, conducted Sept. 17-19, included 41 percent self-identified Democrats, 31 percent independents and 28 percent Republicans. Bills' internal poll found 35 percent Democrats, 40 percent independents and 25 percent Republicans.

The Strib stands behind its Klobuchar-Bills poll, citing the fact that the Minnesota Poll pegged Klobuchar's 20-point victory over Mark Kennedy in 2006. But the Bills campaign criticized it, citing the 2010 gubernatorial campaign -- the final Minnesota Poll showed Mark Dayton up seven points, but of course he ended up needing a recount to prevail.

From the Bills campaign's "Daddy's Poll" press release (emphasis mine):

"We have been complaining about media bias, and of course the media ignores the charge. But if ever there was evidence of bias, this is it. A 13 point Democrat advantage in party ID isn't credible to even the most partisan analyst," said Osskopp.

"Don't forget, Amy's Dad was a columnist for the Star Tribune for 3 decades. It's no coincidence that they are pulling for Daddy's little girl," Osskopp concluded.

The Bills campaign's reference to Jim Klobuchar, a columnist who retired form the Strib in 1996, rankled outspoken Bills critic Michael Brodkorb.

From Brodkorb's blog:

Set aside the sexist comments in the press release for just a moment and focus on the theory being presented by Bills' campaign: The company hired by the Star Tribune to conduct the poll, Mason-Dixon Polling and Research Inc., fudged the numbers in favor of Klobuchar because her father worked for the Star Tribune 16 years ago. This is absolutely ridiculous and spending the time to write out their theory is the maximum amount of time I'm willing to spend discussing it.

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