This story has been updated HERE.
This story is beyond disgusting. The Michigan Republican Party has mailed out a hit piece on John Fisher the Democratic candidate for Michigan’s 61st House district. The mailer asks the recipient to call a phone number to complain about Fisher’s support of the Affordable Care Act. The number they give rings at the bedside of Fisher’s mother, 91-year-old Isabel Marie Kramb, who is in hospice care with congestive heart failure.
Here’s the mailer (I have blurred out the phone number):
Fisher, as you might imagine, is outraged.
The Republican Party has encouraged people to call me before, which worked to my advantage, because most people agree with me that policies that improve life for families and seniors are good for Michigan. But to direct people to call a suffering woman who deserves peace and comfort is beyond the pale. Their lack of ethics and contempt for personal privacy is just another reason for people to question what – or better, who – the Republican Party stands for, so that they can make a wise decision at the ballot box on Nov. 4.
I am disgusted that Republicans are recklessly bullying my mother when she needs rest and quiet the most, but she is not the only senior in Michigan whose life has been disrupted because of them. My competitor, Brandt Iden, should denounce the Michigan Republican Party for such appalling tactics in his name. Lansing Republicans showed contempt for all seniors when they forced them to pay extra in order to fund giveaways for major corporations. The men and women who worked hard all their lives so that their families could succeed deserve better than that, and I will work hard to protect the dignity and security of Michigan seniors when I am in Lansing.
Absolutely, positively disgusting. Michigan Republican Party Chair Bobby Schostak has now proven beyond all doubt that he is a craven, soulless, political parasite. May the universe exact its karmic revenge on him and whoever else was involved in this debauched action before their days are done.
UPDATE: Want to throw some folding money into John Fisher’s campaign tip jar? You can do that HERE.
UPDATE 2: Becky Baldwin, RN, a member of the Michigan Nurses Association Board of Directors and a constituent of the 61st House District issued this statement regarding the mailing:
As a nurse, I am appalled at the GOP’s personal violation against a patient. Harassing patients undergoing treatment should be out of bounds for any politician.
I have known Rev. Fisher for years and he is a man of integrity and caring. The Michigan Republican Party, in contrast, has shown by its actions that these values do not matter to them.
Brandt Iden should apologize to Rev. Fisher and his family. Going forward, the Michigan Republican Party should make it clear to all its candidates that harassing patients is unacceptable, and the party should publicly pledge to follow this rule itself.
Also, we now have clarification about where the phone rings from MLive:
The number is registered under Fisher’s name, but is a direct line to his mother’s room at Tendercare Portage, where Isabel Kramb is currently receiving hospice care for congestive heart failure, said Fisher’s campaign manager David Topping.
If anyone is questioning whether or not this was an intentional act of evil, I draw your attention back to the flyer which very boldly uses the word “bedridden”. Yeah, that MIGHT be a coincidence. I’m not betting on it.
If you’re interested in sharing your thoughts with Michigan Republican Party Chair Bobby Schostak on this, the MRP’s phone number is (517) 487-5413. I’m sure Schostak would be happy to speak with you after he gets back from hobnobbing with multi-millionaires Mitt Romney and Terri Lynn Land in southeast Michigan today.
Finally, it turns out that one of Fisher’s opponents in this race is a Libertarian named Michael Stampfler, the former Emergency Manager of Pontiac who once described city charters as “interesting reading” as far as Emergency Managers were concerned and expressed his belief that removing elected officials from office was just fine. Having someone who doesn’t particularly subscribe to, you know, democracy running for the State House is an interesting twist to this story.