The Republican-backed Congressional Leadership Fund (CLF) is continuing to attack Minnesota Democrat Joe Radinovich over a laundry list of traffic violations and petty misdemeanors, which critics are calling “hyperbolic.”
“What is career politician Joe Radinovich hiding? Radinovich has a history of breaking the law,” a new CLF ad suggests, noting that the Democrat has “30 traffic violations,” including “driving with a suspended license.”
Radinovich was also cited for possession of drug paraphernalia when he was 18, but the charges were dropped under a plea deal.
“There’s a better choice. Pete Stauber has spent his life serving our community—22 years with the Duluth Police Department. Pete Stauber will always put Minnesota families first,” the ad concludes.
In a highly competitive election cycle for Minnesota, the race for Minnesota’s Eighth Congressional District remains a top priority for party leaders as both President Donald Trump and Vice President Mike Pence have campaigned for Stauber in in the district.
“He will make for a great congressman. Pete is strong on crime and borders, loves our military, vets, and Second Amendment,” Trump tweeted in August, offering Stauber his “full and total endorsement.”
Pete Stauber is running for Congress in Minnesota. He will make for a great Congressman. Pete is strong on crime and borders, loves our Military, Vets and Second Amendment. Vote for Pete tomorrow. He has my full and total Endorsement!
— Donald J. Trump (@realDonaldTrump) August 13, 2018
The district, encompassing the northeastern region of the state, went to Trump by 15 percent in the 2016 election, and was ranked as the fifth most expensive district in the nation. But with the retirement of incumbent Rep. Rick Nolan (D-MN-08), the district is once again listed as a “toss up” by the Cook Political Report, and the latest polls show the candidates are in a statistical tie.
With the help of CLF, Stauber is continuing to use Radinovich’s petty crimes against him, contrasting the Democrat’s legal troubles with his own record as a long-time law enforcement officer.
“Voters have a clear choice in Novemeber,” Stauber’s press secretary, Caroline Tarwid said in a recent press release. “Serving 23 years as a law enforcement officer, Pete Stauber has staked his career on character and integrity. For much of that same time, Joe has been ignoring the very law and order that hardworking Minnesotans in the eighth district follow every day.”
Radinovich has taken responsibility for his legal issues, but has downplayed their seriousness by blaming the violations on difficult traffic circumstances in the Hennepin County area where he previously worked.
“Like a lot of people in the Eighth Congressional District, my life has been marked by some real ups and downs,” Radinovich said in a recent interview. “I have made some mistakes along the way and I have enjoyed some successes. I take responsibility for the mistakes I have made in my life.”
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