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It hasn’t exactly come down to name-calling, but the senatorial races in Virginia and Maryland have become down right nasty as the days count down to the election.

No, I’m not talking about actual issue-oriented dialogue. It’s now all about the advertising. Even the news has stopped reporting candidates’ stances on the issues and is instead informing us on the status of their political ads.

Incumbent Sen. George Allen has put trying to figure out his ethnic identity on hold for awhile since, for the first time, he can feel Democratic challenger Jim Webb’s breath on his neck. Allen’s had to haul out the big guns: Senator John Warner.

For those of you not from Virginia, Warner is an institution in this state and on several key committees in the U.S. Senate, including the Armed Services and Homeland Security committees.

Still not familiar?

Okay. He was married to Elizabeth Taylor for about 10 minutes in the early 1980s.

That John Warner.

Meanwhile in his ads, Webb has revealed that (hold onto your hats) George Allen is taking money from special interest groups like the Republican Party. I, for one, am shocked and outraged that a Republican candidate is pocketing money from the very party he represents.

The Maryland senatorial race is providing its own touch of Hollywood glamour in the form of Michael J. Fox. A visibly shaky Fox appears in an ad for Democratic candidate Ben Cardin supporting his stance on embryonic stem cell research.

Okay. I get it. Republican candidate Michael Steele wants Alex Keaton to have Parkinson’s disease. That Michael J. Fox has absolutely nothing to do with the state of Maryland is beside the point. Apparently no one else, not in Maryland, Missouri, New Jersey or Illinois where Fox is also campaigning, has Parkinson’s or any of the other diseases that stem cell research could alleviate. And even if they were, they’re not A Hollywood Celebrity, who as we all know suffer more than other people.

By the way, Mr. Fox, while you’re in Jersey you might slip up to Connecticut and sprinkle some of your celeb dust on Sen. Joseph Lieberman, who is also in favor of embryonic stem cell research. Only he’s not running as a Democrat. Not that it would make a difference, right? Because it’s all about alleviating suffering, not about politics, right?

But – wait! There’s more!

Not to be outdone in tasteless exploitation, talk radio personality Rush Limbaugh had to add to the cringe-fest by parodying Michael J. Fox’s shaking, accusing the actor of over-doing-it for the cameras. Am I the only one who finds this ironic?

Of course, all this mudslinging would be alarming if I thought people actually based their voting decisions on political ads. But no one would be that stupid.

Would they?

Share  Posted by Jeanne Jackson at 3:16 PM | Permalink

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