A new MNGOP attack ad called "Incompetence" links Gov. Mark Dayton with the death of Eric Dean, a 4-year-old from Pope County who died early last year after being repeatedly abused by his father's live-in fiancé.
It was "downright horrifying that [Dayton] signed a law making it more difficult to investigate maltreatment cases," the ad's narrator says.
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"Incompetence has consequences," it concludes. "It's time to stop the incompetence. Stop Mark Dayton."
Here's the video:
As Michael Brodkorb reports, Yvonne Dean, Eric's grandmother and a self-identified Republican, thinks the ad is "unfair" and wants the MNGOP to stop running it.
The "system failed Eric at the county level... how could that be Governor Dayton's fault?" Yvonne told Brodkorb. "I just can't believe somebody would use [Eric's death] for political gain... To use our family's tragedy, is crossing the line."
Yvonne contacted the MNGOP this morning and conveyed her objections, but was told the ad would continue to run, Brodkorb reports.
As if Yvonne's issues aren't enough, the law referred to by the ad was overwhelmingly approved by legislators on both sides of the aisle and actually co-authored by a Republican in the House. So it's not as though Dayton shoulders all the blame.
Here's what a couple prominent DFLers have to say about "Incompetence":
Even MNGOP U.S. Senate candidate Mike McFadden doesn't like it. His spokesperson, Tom Erickson, said in a statement, "The Republican Party of Minnesota should take immediate action to remove Eric Dean's image from their ad and apologize to his family."
Reached for comment, DFL spokesperson Ellen Perrault says her party won't comment on the controversy.
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Send your story tips to the author, Aaron Rupar. Follow him on Twitter @atrupar.
UPDATE: Yvonne Dean told me @MNGOP agreed to remove Eric's image from ad and they will not use his name or mention the case.-- Michael Brodkorb (@mbrodkorb) October 23, 2014