Another Threat Against Governor Gregoire
It just isn't easy being Governor-For-Now Christine Gregoire these days. No matter how hard she tries, she can't seem to get a majority of Washington state residents to believe she was legitimately elected their governor last November.
While the election challenge filed by Republican challenger Dino Rossi winds its way through the courts, Gregoire is forced to find ways to make her political coup look kosher.
One way she's done that so far, is to apply her "Iron Lady" style to the Governor's Mansion, with all of its nastiness and bullying. She's not going to win you over with this side of her personality, she's going to mow you over!
There's another prong to her strategy, however, one that attempts to gain popularity through pathetic attempts at provoking sympathy. Call it the softer side of Christine Gregoire.
Earlier in the year the blogosphere, including Michelle Malkin, Sound Politics and The Radio Equalizer, jointly took Gregoire to task when she claimed that talk radio shows had encouraged people to threaten her life. The Washington State Patrol took extra steps to ensure her safety.
Sound Politics really pressed Gregoire's office as to what talk shows might be responsible but never got specific information. We proved here, using radio industry data, that the only man charged with threatening her lived in a remote area not served by any of Washington state's live and local talk radio programs.
At the time I thought it was rather strange that Gregoire was telling the public about her death threats. After all, it comes with the territory when one works in politics or for the media. Many have stories to tell about run-ins with unstable characters. But usually it's not a good idea to discuss them, because it only encourages more, by highlighting one's vulnerabilities.
So what was Gregoire's goal in making such a big deal about it? It simply has to be an attempt at generating sympathy for her unpopular governorship, how else can you explain that she has done it again?
This time, it's a clearly unstable woman, living near the British Columbia border, making a threat.
Previous Governor Gary Locke must have received a dozen of these types of threats every day. Did he make press statements every time? No, most of the time the public was likely never informed.
Why? Because these people have diagnosed mental illnesses and law enforcement agencies are used to dealing with such situations. Rarely are these actually motivated by politics. This is routine stuff being made into something more by a governor in political trouble.
So when Gregoire actually made a public statement about this latest incident all doubts were erased as to her intentions.
It's not going to work, Christine. You're not going to convince voters that your political opponents are trying to get you killed, even if you aren't directly making that accusation this time. Nobody believes it and they shouldn't, either.
Interesting that in the newest version of the AP story tonight, Gregoire's comments are now only indirectly referenced:
(AP via Seattle Times)
Lee Ann Linville, 44, of Birch Bay, wrote that the governor was "dead meat to God" and that "There is going to be a murder attempt on your life, your childrens lives and your husband," charging papers filed in Whatcom County Superior Court said.
Linville also claimed to have foreknowledge of the Sept. 11, 2001, terrorist attacks, prosecutors said. She claimed the government had stolen her money and that Gregoire should pay her $2.5 million.
From January to March, she sent 10 e-mails to the governor's office.
Gregoire said yesterday she did not know of the threats but isn't worried.
Linville's lawyer, Matt Peach, said during yesterday's hearing that his client "wants you to know that she has absolutely no history of any kind of violence against anyone or anything."
Gregoire said Monday she did not know of the threats, but added: "I am not going to be deterred by anybody who is going to launch a death threat to me. I experienced it when I was attorney general. I understand why some people fixate on an individual who presides as governor or attorney general or as president of the United States."
At least this time Gregoire left off talk radio from the list of those to blame. So maybe we're getting somewhere!