There is something really impressive about Linda McMahon, who is seeking the Republican nomination for U.S. Senate this summer. Her campaign has obviously learned from many of its 2010 flaws and looks to be an impressive, well-oiled machine for the August primary and potentially the November general election. She appears to have the money and the giant staff that could actually give a Republican a chance to win the Nutmeg State.
Since January, The Darien Times — as a representative of Hersam Acorn’s 17 Connecticut weekly newspapers and daily news websites — has been inviting Linda McMahon to sit down for an interview about her candidacy. This is something the three other major U.S. Senate candidates have jumped at a chance to do. After all, Hersam Acorn’s Connecticut publications reach more than 70,000 households and get more than 700,000 unique pageviews each month online.
Each time we called her campaign, someone would tell us they were working on their schedule. And that they really wanted to do it. But after hearing this same answer for a fifth and sixth time — we got the picture.
Mrs. McMahon does not appear to want to actually answer questions or talk about subjects off the cuff. She has her talking points and she likes to stick to them: Connecticut needs jobs; she can create jobs; she has created jobs; the middle class needs tax cuts; Obama’s health care plan is bad but America needs health care.
When you do finally get a few minutes to ask Mrs. McMahon a question, as this newspaper did when she stopped by our weekly community coffee at the Sugar Bowl in late June, she was artful at sticking to her talking points and not actually saying much. If you ask her about something she said in the past that turned out to be unpopular, she says she was misrepresented but then basically says the same thing she was originally quoted as saying — even if you give her a chance to change her stance.
It is strange she says she’s not a career politician — because she can bob and weave a question like some of the best politicians around.
Mrs. McMahon loves to point out how she’s created jobs. But she does not like to answer questions about those jobs. While CEO of World Wrestling Entertainment, she created jobs that included making fun of retarded men, demeaning women and possibly encouraging steroid use — this does not even touch on how it possibly has influenced the future bullies of American schools. But all of this is apparently forgotten because now WWE television shows are rated TV-PG and the company calls it “family entertainment.” We assume that you and your entire family can’t wait each week to pop some corn and gather ’round the flatscreen for another episode of “Monday Night Raw.”
But good for the McMahons. They are a successful family that has built a fortune on men pretending to beat each other up. This is America and in America you have the right to make money off filth. We all share that First Amendment. And thanks to that fortune Mrs. McMahon has made, she can afford not to answer questions about where she actually stands. Or questions about how exactly, as a U.S. senator, she would create jobs back here in Connecticut.
But we aren’t supposed to be concerned about that. Because Mrs. McMahon, as her ads show (a new set of which is scheduled to start airing statewide today) can relate to the common man and woman of Connecticut. It used to be that Connecticut prided itself on being a land full of intelligent, skeptical residents and an educated electorate that saw through the gimmicks of politicians. What happened? Has the horrible job Connecticut Democrats have done over the past decade, made the Nutmeg State this desperate?
She is demanding a free pass to the U.S. Senate — and it appears she’s getting it. Will she expect the same treatment from the other 99 U.S. senators?