Wednesday, November 3, 2010

This Election Season

This campaign we've fact checked multiple ads and covered all three candidates, although the most advertisements have come from the race for the U.S. Senate seat.

McClanahan ran an entirely positive campaign and while we have discussed whether one of her advertisement could be labeled as slightly negative, we believe that she has done a great job in being accurate and sticking to her promises in her advertising strategy.

Shoemyer was the incombant who strongly supports farmers in Missouri. While we feel he may have stretched the truth a little bit in one or two claims, we feel that ran a very truthful campaign.

Carnahan. What to say? Her race against Blunt got nasty. Insults were thrown from both sides and attack ads are almost the only ads played in this race. However, while a lot of claims by Carnahan stretched the truth significantly, she does not blatantly lie in any of her advertisements. So I guess that's something.

All three Democratic candidates lost in Missouri. Since they all ran differing campaigns it would be a stretch to say that it was because of their campaign strategy. The Republicans simply did a great job this year raising money and creating negative public opinion toward anything or anyone associated with President Obama.

Tuesday, November 2, 2010

Adair County Elections

The bad news is that I was not able to find wireless until now since I was running around to various places in Kirksville. The good news is that the election results for Adair County are in!

For U.S. Senate, Blunt won Adair County with over 58%
For U.S. Representative for 2nd district (our district), Wyatt beat McClanahan 54.5% to 43%
For the State Senate seat, Munzlinger beat Shoemyer by 9 points with 54% of the vote

The Republicans definitely have something to celebrate tonight.

On another note, I did get to visit a couple places including the Republican Headquarters, the Kirksville City Hall, and the Truman watch party in the Student Union Building. I wrote my reflections as I went even though I couldn't post them till now.

Republican Headquarters
            I went to the Republican headquarters first, where there were relatively few people at the start of the night. I sat in on an interview with Seth Shumaker, a local attorney, who talked about the hopeful outcomes of the night. He said he bet that the atmosphere at the RHQ was much more enthusiastic than the Democrat’s party that was occurring at Dukum, because he believed results would turn out more in the Republican’s favor.

            I had a chance to ask him a question myself and I asked how he felt about the record spending that was occurring this campaign. He told me that he thought it was terrible that someone had to have so much money to even consider running for office. However, when asked about his opinion over the roles of interest groups and organizations who create much of the funding that is used in election campaigns, he felt that they provided a needed outlet for people to get involved. 

Around Kirksville
            The atmosphere around Kirksville outside of the major watch parties was definitely lacking in political enthusiasm. While I was pleased to see quite a few “I voted” stickers, there were very few places even showing the election results. The Wooden Nickel was playing basic news on a small TV, while the main TV is displaying sports. 

Kirksville City Hall
           The Kirksville courthouse is filled with a couple dozen people in the main lobby. The atmosphere so far is uneventful while people are awaiting results. The people are primarily people who helped with a certain campaign or media. The atmosphere stirred up when results were announced, but quickly scattered afterwards.

Student Watch Party
          The event was definitely far from gathering a large crowd, but for the most part the students who were there were very into watching the election results. There wasn't much excitement, but rather more focus on the information being presented. News 36 was being broadcast and not many people seemed thrilled about the election results that were presented in Adair County. Many people were completely shocked that McClanahan did not win our district. 

To see a full list of Missouri races, click here to go to the Secretary of State's election results page. 

Exciting news!

I (Samantha) will be running around to a couple locations tonight checking out the election day scene here in Kirksville and covering the results of the elections as they come in. I will be posting these results and the descriptions of events in Kirksville on the blog several times tonight starting at around 8 pm. I will be dropping by the Republican Headquarters, an election watch party at Truman State's Student Union Building, and hopefully a couple other places if time allows. Check back in tonight for your election news or watch News 36 to see live television coverage of the election results!

Monday, November 1, 2010


The midterm elections are TOMORROW! Can you believe it's finally here? I know I can't.

This midterm season has been absolutely ridiculous in terms of advertising. Even though it's only a midterm election, this season is set to spend a record breaking amount in campaign spending. Earlier this month the amount predicted was $3 billion according to an article by The New York Times, which was already a record amount. More recent estimates have placed the spending close to $4 billion dollars!!

What have we seen as far as ads for our area? The Carnahan-Blunt race for the U.S. Senate seat has spent over $17.6 million, with Carnahan spending just under Blunt with a little over $8.7 million in campaign spending.

The Missouri elections for state legislature positions have had less spending, since they are only financing for advertising in a single voting district and both McClanahan and Shoemyer are incumbents. Shoemyer has raised $285,076 for his campaign and McClanahan has raised $83,142. McClanahan's promise to not engage in negative campaigning and only have positive campaign strategies could account for the decreased campaign money since she doesn't have to worry about attack ads.

Now, GET OUT AND VOTE. This is a huge election, so make sure your voice is heard! If you want to compare candidates for their accuracy feel free to check our site for the Democratic side of advertisements, and our partner blog, The Republican Watchdogs, for the Republican candidates' advertisements.

Thursday, October 28, 2010

Wes Shoemyer Working on Grain Elevator

As the elections are approaching nearer, candidates are producing more and more ads in order to convince voters to elect them. Even Wes Shoemyer, who had so far not been seen in internet ads, has released a new ad.

Shoemyer's talks about how he has been working with Governor Jay Nixon for a new Grain Elevator in Canton, Missouri. A Grain Elevator is a tower that contains a bucket elevator which is used to elevate and then drop grains at a storage.

The ad starts with Shoemyer stating that "we have been waiting years, we have been waiting for generations for this elevator." The rest of Shoemyer's ad explains why this elevator is required. According to Shoemyer, this elevator will help farmers a lot because the only other elevator right now is located across the Mississippi river. Shoemyer says that the elevator will save farmers in Missouri lots of money in terms of transport costs. In addition, it will also save them time and decrease safety risks.

Throughout the time Shoemyer talks, he constantly identifies himself with the farmers, and with Missourians. Shoemyer ends his ad by saying that this is a "win-win situation" for everybody involved and that the people of Missouri will be extremely happy with this Proposition before stating that when he drives up to the elevator and sees trucks unload and grain flowing in the Missouri side, he will ask some of the farmers if having the elevator was great, they would answer by saying that they had waited a long time and would thank him.

Shoemyer's ad can be watched here.

Monday, October 25, 2010

Shoemyer: A Good Attempt at Appearing Legit

So the other day I got this 8 x 11 inch flyer in the mail from Missouri Senate incumbent, Wes Shoemyer, that compares himself to his opponent, Brian Munzlinger. (See poorly taken camera picture below)

Now, what originally impressed me was the fact that it had references listed as to what bill exactly Shoemyer was making claims such as that he "pushed for legislation to allow farmers to save their genetically modified seeds for future use." He directly cited Senate Bill 68 to argue that point and to say that his opponent didn't want the good ol' farmers of Missouri to save their genetically modified seeds.

When I first saw that he referenced a bill I thought, "Well, hey! This should make verifying the facts a lot easier!" and I expected to just verify that he was telling the truth, since he did in fact list the actual bill for reference. I guess he didn't expect people to actually look at the bill?

For this example, it's a bill that Shoemyer himself put forth that actually advocates for farmers to have to pay a fee to keep their genetically modified seeds. Now, maybe that's a step up from the current legislation, but we can't seem to find anything that says that previous legislation wouldn't allow farmers to keep their seeds before this regulation. It was obviously not the best reference bill Shoemyer could have used if that was the case anyway.

Anyone else know of the previous GMO (genetically modified organisms) legislation?

Also, for everyone's enjoyment, in a couple hours it's my birthday! Yayyyy! (-Samantha)

Thursday, October 21, 2010

Roy Blunt and Potatoes

This week, again, we have to talk about Carnahan and Blunt's campaign as the ad war between these candidates is now actually becoming funny.

Carnahan's ad, popularly known as 'Potatoes' attacks Roy Blunt again in the same way these two have been attacking each other throughout their campaign. It now seems that instead of talking about issues and saying why they are a better candidate than the other, these two are hell bent on talking about why the other candidate is worse.

Carnahan's ad starts by asking what "this museum for teapots, this swimming pool, and this center for studying potatoes have in common" It continues, "Thanks to Roy Blunt, they've been getting your tax dollars." The ad continues saying that Blunt has become a leader in allowing earmarks to get out of control. "He's been called a 'prodigious pork-meister' for earmarks that cost you $20 bullion a year. That's a lot of potatoes. I'm Robin Carnahan and I approve this message because I'm banning earmarks once and for all" concludes the ad.
Robin Carnahan's ad can be seen here:

This ad refers to the money for three earmarks included in various spending bills. The teapot museum was part of an overall spending bill supported by Blunt and was not a subject of a separate vote. The other two earmarks were considered separately, and Blunt voted to keep them just like a large majority of House members. A Democratic Representative had actually defended one of these earmarks by saying that the potato research goes to developing potato varieties that will help both producers and consumers financially and in terms of health.

The claim of earmarks costing $20 billion a year turns out to be not completely accurate, but far from a lie. Although the amount is not that high, estimates for earmarks this year range between $11 billion and $16 billion ( 

Although Carnahan and Blunt have not actually been lying in any of their ads, there seems to be plenty of spinning and inaccurate criticizing going on. It is now going to a point where at least we bloggers find it amusing than anything else.