As reported by Politico, there is an almost unprecedented effort by Democrats to undermine Issa not for anything he does in Congress, but by trying to dig up supposedly negative facts against him and thereby force Issa to defend himself rather than carry on his congressional probes of the Obama administrations:
Democrats are understandably obsessed with Darrell Issa — he’s built himself up as a one-man investigative machine aimed straight at the Obama presidency.Are you motivated for 2012 yet? You better get motivated, because they are.
But a handful of liberal political operatives in California — including a former Hillary Clinton hand — are taking their anti-Issa passion to a whole new level, launching a nonprofit group, a website and even paid media advertisements aimed at undermining and investigating the rabble-rousing chairman of the House Oversight and Government Reform Committee.
They say they’re leaving no stone unturned in digging into Issa’s personal and business history. This week, the group will reveal more than 100 pages about an investigation into a fire that burned down a building that housed his business in the early 1980s.
The launch of this group — which calls itself The Third Lantern, and is naming the website the Issa Files — is remarkable because it’s wholly focused on the activities of one lawmaker who has no immediate plans to run for higher office. The purpose of this new group is to make public documents more public, make life difficult for Issa and sow seeds of doubt on his investigations.
They plan to run TV advertisements and other paid media in the future, saying they already have a “significant commitment” of cash. A spokesman for Issa, Kurt Bardella, dismissed the effort as a “misguided and distasteful smear campaign against Chairman Issa.”
The group will be run by the principals of SCN Strategies, a San Francisco-based consulting firm that produced ads last cycle for California’s Democratic Gov. Jerry Brown and Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid (D-Nev.). One of those deeply involved is Averell “Ace” Smith — who ran Hillary Clinton’s successful 2008 California and Texas primary operations and is known as one of the more cutthroat political operatives in the business
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