Thursday, October 21, 2004

Thanks, pals!

In the UK Telegraph - British intervention in poll backfires:
Dan Harkins, a political activist in the vital swing state of Ohio, was excited when he first heard that the Guardian newspaper was recruiting readers to write to voters in his state in the hopes of giving foreigners a voice in the American election.

Yesterday, the first of about 14,000 Guardian readers' letters started arriving in the mailboxes of Clark County, Mr Harkins's home region - chosen by the British paper as a pivotal election district where President George W Bush and Senator John Kerry are neck and neck.

The first letters to be made public all urged Clark County voters to reject Mr Bush. As he watched the reaction of friends and neighbours, Mr Harkins was delighted.

He is the chairman of the Clark County Republican Party, and his neighbours' reaction was outrage. "It's hysterical," laughed Mr Harkins, showing off sheaves of incensed e-mails and notes from local voters.
Some samples:
Terry Brown had received a letter from a Scottish Guardian reader. The navy veteran and retired lorry builder was "offended" as he read the polite note, from Nicola Smith of West Lothian, with its denunciation of the Iraq war as a "farce", and closing plea to remove from power "the parties responsible for this war".

Mr Brown looked out at his front garden, decorated with a US flag on a tall pole, a giant carving of an American eagle and a wooden cross marked: "September 11, 2001".
Smooth move, Ex-Lax.
Less happily, Mr Evans concluded that another Bush victory would so anger the world that Americans would have to "put on a Canadian accent when travelling abroad". His tone so alarmed Ms Coale, a Kerry voter, that she feared the letter came from terrorists. "With so much going on today, you wonder about some of these groups," she said.
They are terrorists, the limp-wristed kind.

Follow the link for more, including a snap of the local paper's headline, Butt out Brits, voters say.