Virginia senator’s staff wrestle blogger

Campaigns are getting dirtier and dirtier — I thought some of the Minnesota races’ ads were bad, but Senator Allen’s staff here literally stoops pretty low, wrestling a constituent to the floor. With a headlock.

As you may have heard in video above, CNN reports that Mike Stark, the guy with the backpack who was roughed up, was a “protester.” Mr. Stark, in a letter to a local news station here, identifies himself as a “law student at the University of Virginia, a marine, and a citizen journalist.” You might know him better as one of the bloggers at Daily KOS.

Senator George Allen from Virginia is the macaca guy. You know: the guy who called the Indian guy “Macaca.” At a stump speech, Allen referred to S. R. Sidarth, a volunteer for his opponent’s camp in the audience, as “Macaca, or whatever his name is.” Then, later, “let’s give a welcome to Macaca here.”

A macaca is a kind of monkey. Which seemed a very idiosyncratic type of racism. Who calls somebody a monkey, and if you call them a monkey, who specifies the genus/species? But, as an article in the New Yorker recently pointed out, “macaca” is a very common racial slur in Tunisia. Where the cosmopolitan Senator Allen grew up. Ah. Well, then.

But, after macaca and a spate of blogger-beating, Democratic challenger James Webb has pulled a slight 4% lead in the polls. So if constituents have to be beaten and insulted, at least there could be a bright side. Track all you favorite Senate races at the fine, fine site, www.electoral-vote.com (thanks, LeftPedal!).

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