Oversen Rips Opponent for DUI Then Sends Out Mailer Promoting Fellow Democrat With Multiple Alcohol Convictions

A screenshot from a video ad created by Democrat Kylie Oversen's campaign. It purports to show a van driven erratically by incumbent Tax Commissioner Ryan Rauschenberger who was admitted to struggles with alcohol addiction in the past and was arrested for DUI last year YouTube

Kylie Oversen, candidate for Tax Commission and erstwhile chair of the North Dakota Democratic Party, has made a lot of hay on the campaign trail over her opponent’s struggles with alcohol.

She’s run two ads attacking incumbent Republican Ryan Rauschenberger’s arrest for driving under the influence of alcohol last year.

Here’s the first one, which was posted online about a month ago. It features actual video from the arrest:

The second, released a couple of weeks ago, shows an actor driving erratically what is supposed to be a Rauschenberger campaign van:

What’s interesting about this situation is that Oversen’s pique over driving under the influence seems to be selective. While she’s been raking Rauschenberger over the coals, she’s also campaigning alongside Secretary of State candidate and fellow Democrat Josh Boschee.

“Democratic Secretary of State candidate Josh Boschee pleaded guilty to two separate misdemeanor reckless driving charges — one in 2006 and another in 2010 — that involved chemical dependency evaluations,” April Baumgarten reported earlier this year. In addition to those two driving-related alcohol violations, Boschee also has a misdemeanor conviction for selling/possessing/consuming alcohol in public.

A reader sent me the photo below of a campaign mailer featuring both Oversen and Boschee (I’ve obscured the reader’s personal information). “As Kylie rails on Rauschenberger for getting a DUI, she sidles up with Boschee, who has three alcohol-related offenses on his record,” the reader, an active Democrat, told me. “Talk about talking out of both sides of her mouth.”

To their credit, both Rauschenberger and Boschee have been open when talking about their past alcohol-related convictions. I don’t believe they’re going to be much of a factor in either race. In fact, Oversen’s attacks on Rauschenberger are so heavy handed, they may actually do more to hurt her own campaign than the incumbent’s.

Rob Port is the editor of SayAnythingBlog.com, a columnist for the Forum News Service, and the host of the Rob (Re)Port on Fargo-based WDAY AM970 from noon-2pm weekdays.

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