Wellstone Accused of Voter Fraud, Threatened with Death, Day before His Plane Crash

There’s absolutely no reason to think that the barely literate postcard sent to Paul Wellstone’s office the day before his plane crash had anything to do with his death.

The FBI files [released in FOIA to Minnesota Public Radio] reveal, for the first time, the specific criminal leads pursued by investigators.

FBI agents investigated the claims of a caller from Jacksonville, Florida, who said that members of the American Trucking Association had planned to disconnect the plane’s de-icers. The man said that Wellstone had been trying to schedule Senate hearings to expose organized crime in the trucking industry. In response to the call, a Wellstone staff member asked a Labor Committee member and a legislative director “who both indicated that they were not aware of any Senate hearing being scheduled to discuss this topic.” The rest of the document has been redacted.

Agents also obtained a threatening postcard sent to Wellstone’s St. Paul office the day before the plane crash. The handwritten postcard said, in part, “We need to gut (sic) the word out for the snipper (sic) to go after people like you, not real Americans … This voter fraud you propose will get you dead.”

After all, the FBI investigated the threat.

But I think it worth calling attention to the postcard because it’s the of the kind of violence Republican myths about voter fraud elicit. I can’t make out the whole postcard, [updated w/isis’ and scribe’s suggestions] It reads at least in part, [see PDF 6]

We know your system for voters. It won’t work. You have been targeted. We need to gut [sic] the word out for the snipper [sic] to go after people like you, not real Americans. This card is for you pimps [perps?] to read “Dead Man Walking!” I have cousin at UMN Inside info this voter fraud you propose will get you dead. MC2

The GOP’s sustained effort to accuse those who mobilize Democratic constituencies — as Wellstone did better than anyone — of vote fraud is designed not just to delegitimize both big-D and small-D democracy, but also to elicit this kind of tribalistic hatred.

Sparky Takes a Dump, Produces Turd Named McCain and Other News and Notes From Wingnut Hell In Arizona

Yes, that is Sparky the Sun Devil and the small turd next to him is John McCain (no, it is not a photoshop; is a real picture McCain himself put out on Twitter). As you may have heard, the Arizona primary was last Tuesday and McCain squeaked by the “serious challenge” of gasbag extraordinaire J.D. Hayworth. McCain beat Hayworth by 25 points. But for months, going back even well before Hayworth finally was forced to quit campaigning on his radio show and admit he was actually running, the national media clucking heads were yammering relentlessly about how McCain was “vulnerable” and “in the fight of his political life”. It was, as just about everything with McCain is, a complete gin job and fabrication by the national media.

Here is what I said in an email discussion with a number of colleagues back on February 24 after one of them started talking about McCain being in trouble:

I am telling you, I just do not, at least yet, see any giant tidal wave here for Hayworth. … It may change, but so far in Arizona, the Hayworth bandwagon is far overrated by the national chattering classes.

….

Again, the problem is there is a very established Republican party and attendant power and money machine here and they do not like JD Hayworth for shit and never did; they did not give a rat’s ass about him losing to Harry Mitchell, in fact if they had, he would not have lost. Quite frankly, McCain is not their favorite either in some regards; but he sure is compared to Hayworth historically. Plus McCain has Grant Woods behind the scenes again, and he is very good and pretty ruthless. Hayworth’s sound bites make for dandy fodder for FoxNews, MSNBC and, to a lesser extent CNN, but they do not mean diddly shit here. This is not a national election, it is an Arizona Republican primary.

I tried to correct the record with any number of places and people when I saw this meme, right up to the election; mostly to little avail. I am a native here and have been around a long time, there was just never a chance in hell that Hayworth could even get close to McCain; but you just could not stop the national political horserace chattering chowderheads like Chuck Todd, Chris Matthews, Chris Cillizza, the Politico boys etc. from perpetrating this pile of dung.

They were full of it as the vote total demonstrated. Now they have blithely moved on to compensating for their ignorance and/or incompetence by clucking about “yes, yes, McCain won big, but he had to sell out and be someone he wasn’t to do it”. See for instance USA Today, NPR, Reuters, and Dan Balz of the Washington Post.

It is all pure unadulterated rubbish. A con. McCain has always been a completely self serving grifter con who has never been dedicated to any principle or cause other than John McCain. McCain walked out on his first wife and family after returning from Vietnam, after she had waited for him the entire time and while she was crippled and laid up bedridden from a tragic car accident. Left her while they were still married and brought his flim flam carpetbag to Arizona because it provided what he thought was his best shot of anywhere in the country to get a seat in Congress and because there was a very cute and very rich beer heiress here whose family could provide him with the juice and Read more

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