Wednesday, May 19, 2010

Blumenthal Dips in Polls

Since he used (misused?) a Veterans of Foreign War (VFW) hall in West Hartford to answer charges that he falsely claimed to have served in Vietnam, Attorney General Richard Blumenthal has been given a thumbs down by:

1) Rob Simmons, a four year veteran of the war. Mr. Simmons told Politico, “He's not a veteran of foreign wars,” said Simmons, who is a VFW member. “He should not be a member of the VFW, and I find it offensive that he's still wrapping himself in the veteran flag of those of us who served in Vietnam."

2) Vets for Freedom, the largest group of Iraq and Afghanistan veterans:

“After the New York Times exposed his real service record, Mr. Blumenthal remained defiant at his rebuttal press conference, saying he takes ‘full responsibility’ for the statements, yet refuses to apologize,” said Pete Hegseth, an Iraq war veteran and the group’s executive director, in a statement. “Mr. Blumenthal also claims he merely ‘misspoke’ on a few occasions, and did so unknowingly. As a combat veteran of Iraq, I find this very hard to believe. All veterans know what they did and where they were. There’s a big difference between the battlefield and your hometown.”
3) Richard DiFederico, The commander of Connecticut’s Veterans of Foreign Wars:

“Mr. Blumenthal was considered one of the best friends a veteran could have in Connecticut. It is a true shame that he let a false claim of Vietnam service change that. Those who served in uniform during the Vietnam era also deserve our gratitude, which makes Mr. Blumenthal's claim to be something he is not so outrageous.”
And Linda McMahon, credited by Hartford Courant columnist Kevin Rennie with providing the spark that lit the bonfire at the New York Times, is now in a virtual dead heat with Blumenthal, according to the most recent Rassmussen Poll:

“The latest Rasmussen Reports telephone survey of Likely Voters in Connecticut finds Blumenthal with just a three-point advantage over Linda McMahon, 48% to 45%. Two weeks ago, he led the former CEO of World Wrestling Entertainment by 13 percentage points. The New York Times story broke late Monday; the survey was taken Tuesday evening.”

And Rob Simmons is creeping up on Blumenthal’s Achille’s heel:

“When matched against former GOP Congressman Rob Simmons, Blumenthal leads by 11 - 50% to 39%. Two weeks ago, the longtime state attorney general held a 23-point lead over Simmons.”

On the upside, Daniela Altimari of the Hartford Courant is reporting that two prominent Democrats have rushed to Blumenthal’s support.

Dan Malloy, running as a Democrat for governor, said of Blumenthal, “"He said he misspoke several times, and that he regrets it. I believe when the people of Connecticut measure his entire body of work against these misstatements they will put them in the proper context and move on. I look forward to working with him when I'm Governor and he's a U.S. Senator."

And U.S. Sen. Chris Dodd, who is planning to end his long career in the U.S. Senate at the expiration of his term, said that Blumenthal is “"an honorable man who has served his state and country proudly. He is a terrific Attorney General and he will be a great United States Senator."

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