I Was A Teenage Slanderer


The midterm elections produced so much news that I initially missed the most personal victory of the night. In Ohio's 73rd House district, in Richland County, voters picked a 26 year old Northwestern University grad named Jay Goyal to represent them in Columbus. Not only did Goyal attend NU the same time I did; I was almost a patsy in the Republican attempts to defeat him. Back in 2001-2004 I played various editorial roles at the Northwestern Chronicle, a conservative paper that reported breathlessly on Goyal's leadership in campus anti-war groups. Goyal tells me:

The Republicans had quite a bit of information about my college political activities due to articles written in the Northwestern Chronicle.  In fact, they even went so far as to create a TV commercial that attempted to paint me as a terrorist and compared me to Osama Bin Laden based on some of the articles in the Chronicle and my ethnicity.  Fortunately, they decided not to run the ad.  We heard that it was mainly because their polling showed that I was too far ahead to make the ground up.

There's a surprising happy ending for you—Republicans dug up dirt on a candidate's anti-war activism and decided they couldn't hurt him with it.

UPDATE: If it isn't clear, I'm not praising the election of a liberal Democrat as an unalloyed good for America and freedom. The point is that the guy was on record leading a campus anti-war group and the Republicans decided it couldn't be used against him.