Liberal NH bloggers are up in arms that the staff of Congressman Bass may be medling with their sites "trolling." The NH bloggers at NH-02 Progressive, The Yankee Doodler and Blue Granite say that they have caught a Bass staffer read handed and tracked their comments back to a United States House IP address. We have included part of their post (whch recieved front page Daily Kos treatment) below:
Yesterday Kos put up a post detailing how the Kean campaign was concern-trolling at Blue Jersey. We NH-02 bloggers (Keener at NH-02 Progressive, Republic Not Empire at The Yankee Doodler, and me at Blue Granite) were particularly interested to read about this, since we've faced something like this at several points this summer.
Specifically, a commenter called "IndyNH" or "IndieNH" has left concern troll comments containing sentences like
I am sure the Bass people read this and other blogs. Let's be sure they know we are not a bunch of idiots who think just because we write something on the Internet that we believe it is true.
S/he was posting these comments from house.gov.
Keener first noticed IndieNH after he (I'll say he for convenience sake) commented on posts on Charlie Bass, NH-02's Republican incumbent, and stem cells and the minimum wage. Both times his comments were classic concern troll and we noted with interest that he was visiting from the House of Representatives. In fact, we did the advanced math of: Consistently pro-Bass comments (in addition to the ones at our sites, see ones at Swing State Project and Outside the Beltway) + house.gov IP address = Bass staffer.
But IndieNH's all-time high came shortly after at the beginning of August when a new Granite State Poll came out that looked bad for Paul Hodes. I devoted a post to critiquing it and IndieNH came along to say this:
I have read the poll data too and I agree that this is very bad news for Hodes and that our chances here in NH are very dim. This probably means the national party and national money will look somewhere else to pickup the seats needed to win back Congress, but that is smart and I hope they find the right races.
I don't want them spending one dime on wasted effort. We only need 15 House seats and 6 Senate seats - not all of them. I am going to look at the competitive race list to figure out where to send another mydd.com / netroots donation and maybe help out in other ways. Maybe CT or NY for me - they are at least close by.
Anyone interested in pooling NH efforts for some of those races? Maybe we could even go help out for a few days in buses or something in November?
That's right, an apparent Bass staffer was encouraging us to devote our efforts to defeating Republicans in neighboring states. Now that's collegiality!
This week, IndyNH (with a y not an ie) reappeared at my blog, again in response to a post on a poll that looked bad for Paul Hodes. I had made the point that, in brief, the poll was a cheap piece of crap with no validity - as has since been backed up by the DCCC's release of a poll showing Bass and Hodes TIED (and don't even try to talk to me about partisan polling - the DCCC is not adding Hodes to Red to Blue and throwing money at him on the basis of a wishful-thinking poll).
Anyway, IndyNH made the following points (including the one quoted at the top)
I think it is a huge mistake to shoot at these polls, it makes us look naïve.
I am sure the Bass people read this and other blogs. [Hey, ya think?] Let's be sure they know we are not a bunch of idiots who think just because we write something on the Internet that we believe it is true.
And, when I responded to that one, he came back with
I do not think that other people will read this blog and get excited or turned off to Hodes based on what we say. They need to hear from Paul himself. We should help him get his message out and not try to spin an obvious cow's ear into a silk purse.