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Jack Oberlander, West Fargo, Published December 01 2012

Letter: Heitkamp conducted the most brutally negative campaign ever

To a person, everyone I know claims to hate the negative ads that go along with the campaign season. We can expect more of the same as we continue to reward them.

I have never experienced the degree of outright lies, innuendo and character assassination that were launched at Rick Berg this year. The national interests, local campaign ads and Heidi Heitkamp’s brother’s radio show were equally culpable in all of the above.

Attacking his endorsements:

A former director of the YMCA. Gee, were any of Heidi Heitkamp’s relatives involved in this?

Attacking his affiliation with his former company:

P.S. Not related to Berg, but try renting to thousands of tenants and not receive any complaints.

Attacking his character: “You can’t trust Rick Berg.”

Attacking his travel to and from Bismarck to serve our state:

How much did he charge for his personal plane? The travel allowance for state legislators possibly? I was able to pause on the invoice displayed in the ad and it showed 100 miles charged for 400 miles of travel. Either Berg is horrible at invoicing or was he possibly cost sharing?

The above are what I will remember from the Heitkamp campaign. The only self-directed ads I remember are that Heitkamp will build a refinery (we’ll see how that goes), fight the evil billionaires (even though everyone would like to be one) and be an independent voice for North Dakota (yeah, right). Be careful what you promise. It will be fodder for the next round of negative campaigns if you don’t deliver.

I recognize that Heitkamp was also the target of negative ads, just not to the same degree.

Make no mistake: Heitkamp is going to Washington because of a brutally negative campaign. I truly hope that she is better and serves our state with greater honor and integrity than the forces that got her there.