With just a few days left until the polls open in California, the race to succeed outgoing Rep. Henry Waxman in the 33rd congressional district has gotten ugly fast.
Front-running campaigns are turning to attack mailers and, in one case, harassing phone calls to slam rivals and drum up support, reports the Los Angeles Times.
Former Los Angeles controller and Democratic candidate Wendy Greuel kicked off the week by sending voters a mailer blasting rival Democratic state Sen. Ted Lieu, calling him “the senator in Sacramento who caved to corrupt politicians.”
Lieu was swept up in a federal corruption probe earlier this year but was cleared of all wrongdoing.
Lieu’s campaign consultant, Gale Kaufman, struck back at Greuel, accusing her of reviving the same dirty tactics she used in her failed Los Angeles mayoral bid last year: “Now she has slandered Ted Lieu with false attacks that are based on phony press citations,” Kaufman told the Times.
Meanwhile, fellow Democratic candidate Matt Miller slammed both Greuel and Lieu in a mailer sent to district voters this week. In the mailer, Miller attacked Greuel for accepting large sums of fundraising cash from the Los Angeles Department of Water and Power in last year’s mayoral race. He similarly attacked Lieu by questioning the state Senator’s decision to take campaign cash from insurance companies while serving on the Senate’s insurance committee.
On the other hand, supporters of Independent candidate and best-selling author Marianne Williamson are reporting a different kind of election-week offensive.
For the last several weeks, Williamson’s supporters have reportedly been prank-called by an individual who asks them whether they support the candidate. When they answer yes, the caller hangs up and proceeds to call back multiple times a day.
The calls are apparently originating from a union based in San Diego, although they deny making the calls. Ileana Wachtel, Williamson’s campaign manager, told Breitbart News that the situation is “really weird… The union have said it’s not them, even though it’s their number that pops up on Caller ID.”
The race in California’s 33rd district is expected to be extremely tight, even though campaign polling numbers are being kept under wraps. Breitbart News’ own “election handicap” report predicts that Ted Lieu holds a slim but negligible lead.