The Democratic Party of Wisconsin today released a new video shining the light on the negative attacks that Washington D.C. hedge fund manager Eric Hovde has made against his Republican U.S. Senate opponents even while he trying to claim he is running a positive campaign.

The Party's new video "Different Rules" can be viewed here.

In addition to the video, the Party has also released research proving that while Hovde claims he is running a positive campaign, it is Hovde that is throwing mud and running a negative campaign.

Background:

Hovde Claimed He Would Run A Positive Campaign…

Hovde Claimed He “Didn’t Want To Go Negative.” In July 2012, the Shorewood Patch reported: “Hovde, the businessman and political newcomer from Sun Prairie, released a statement Friday saying he didn't want to go negative, but he couldn't let ads from Neumann go unanswered.” [Shorewood Patch, 7/15/2012]

Hovde Said He Would “Try And Stay Positive” Even While He Criticized Neumann For Attacking Him. In July 2012, the Shorewood Patch reported: “[Hovde] told a crowd of about 40 people at Bendtsen's Bakery, 3200 Washington Ave., that he knows people are sick of negative ads, but that's what happens when people feel threatened. ‘When people are threatened, they attack,’ he said. ‘Mark Neumann is trying to distort my record, you know, so how do you respond to that? I'm going to continue to try and stay positive. My whole goal is to focus on the issues.’” [Shorewood Patch, 7/15/2012]

Hovde Said He Will “Draw A Distinction” But Won’t “Throw Mud Against The Wall. In a radio interview in July 2012, Hovde said: “I think it’s time to draw a distinction. I’m not going to go out and throw mud against the wall or try to make up things or distort somebody’s record.  But I do think much like I talk about here with Governor Thompson, you know he’s been attacking me, puts out all these press releases, but you know there are big contrasts.” [Jerry Bader interview, 7/12/2012]

Hovde Said He Will “Continue To Be Positive” But Will “Start Responding” To Attacks. In a radio interview in July 2012, Hovde said: “I’m going to continue to be positive, but I’m also not going to sit there and be silent when I come under constant attacks from [Thompson] or Mark Neumann and I’m finally going start responding to them.” [Jerry Bader interview, 7/12/2012]

…But He Frequently criticizes His Opponents

Hovde Attacking Thompson

Hovde Said “A Lot Of The Problems Scott Walker Inherited Were Born In The Tommy Time.” In a June 2012 radio interview, Hovde said: “Look, I think you have to look at a person’s record – not what they say, their record. Tommy grew the state by 118%. He grew the state government bigger than Jim Doyle did. And furthermore, there was a very comprehensive article just last week in the Isthmus magazine here in Wisconsin that basically said a lot of the problems that Scott Walker inherited were born in the Tommy time, Tommy’s timeframe. Because what he did, while he said he held down the increases at the rate of salary increases, what he did is he pushed all the benefits to the back end. Pension benefits, you know, insurance benefits, all these things that were embedded during Tommy’s time were the problems that Scott Walker inherited so you’ve got to look at the track record.” [Halvorsen interview, 6/29/2012]

Hovde Complained Of Thompson And Neumann Attacking Him For Being A Hedge Fund Banker. In a radio interview in July 2012, Hovde said: “Well, you know Tommy and Mark Neumann have been attacking me the day that I got into this race, and have been trying to throw mud against the wall. The reality is that I’ve been deeply involved in this state. They constantly want to say that I’m a hedge-fund manager, and yet they don’t pick up on the fact that - and I just released my financial report - that my main business is community banking.” [Mark Belling interview, 7/10/2012]

Hovde Accused Thompson Of Saying “One Thing In One Forum And Then He Says Another Thing In Another Forum.” In a radio interview in July 2012, Hovde said: “It seems like Tommy gets a pass. He says one thing in one forum, and then he says another thing in another forum. You know, I’m answering every question. I don’t run from everything.” [Mark Belling interview, 7/10/2012]

Hovde Criticized Thompson For Growing Government And Being A “Corporate Lobbyist.” In a radio interview in July 2012, Hovde said: “Tommy’s whole approach is big government. You know he grew state government by 118% while he was there. He’s been a corporate lobbyist. You talk about what could come out in the general election, that’s reality.” [Mark Belling interview, 7/10/2012]

Hovde Criticized Thompson For Being In Politics Since 1966 And Being A “Corporate Lobbyist.” In a radio interview in July 2012, Hovde said: “But I think ultimately that it’s going to be a race between me and Tommy. And people have got two stark choices: somebody that’s been involved in politics since 1966 and has since been a corporate lobbyist versus me who has spent 25 years in the private sector.” [Mark Belling interview, 7/10/2012]

Hovde Said Thompson “Bought Off The Unions” And Created Wisconsin’s Budget Problems. In a radio interview in July 2012, Hovde said: “There’s a lot of people that’ll tell you that the problems that Scott Walker inherited, the three and a half billion dollar deficit, largely came from Tommy’s era. Tommy always used to say, ‘I’m holding down state workers’ salaries,’ but what he did was he pushed everything into the pensions, and into the health care. And you know there was a great article going back and showing how Tommy bought off the unions, and gave them everything in the back door that ended up creating a lot of the economic problems that Scott Walker inherited, and that’s just a fact.” [Mark Belling interview, 7/10/2012]

Hovde Gave Thompson A “D” For His Last Two Terms In Office. In a radio interview in July 2012, Hovde said: “I would grade his first two terms probably A-, and I would grade his last two terms probably, as a conservative Republican, probably a D.” [Mark Belling interview, 7/10/2012]

Hovde: “For Tommy To Utter That He’s A Fiscal Conservative Is More Than A Little Bit Laughable.” In a January 2012 interview with Jeff Bader, Hovde said: “I haven’t found any politician, certainly not from a Democratic side and very few from the Republican side that have been even close to being fiscally conservative, and for Tommy to utter that he’s a fiscal conservative is more than a little bit laughable. And I don’t mean to be taking shots at Tommy but that’s just the reality.” [Jeff Bader Show, 1/25/2012]

Hovde Spox Lansing: Thompson Should Explain Why He Raised Taxes And Increased State Spending. In a June 2012 press release, Hovde campaign spokesman Sean Lansing said: “It’s certainly disappointing that, once again, Governor Thompson is denying Wisconsin voters a good, honest debate. With record high spending, crushing debt and tax rates that are set to skyrocket, folks deserve to know where a governor who increased state spending by 118 percent while raising taxes and fees by millions and increasing our debt by $1.8 billion stands on these issues.” [Hovde campaign statement, 6/19/2012]

Hovde Campaign: Thompson Profited Off His Time In Office As A Lobbyist. In a July 2012 campaign press release, Hovde spokesperson Sean Lansing said, “Tommy Thompson is a career politician and corporate lobbyist… Thompson got rich quick as a corporate lobbyist by profiting off his time in office.” [Hovde press release, 7/13/2012]

Hovde Said Thompson’s Career As A “Corporate Lobbyist” And His Gubernatorial Record Make Him Unelectable. In a radio interview in July 2012, Hovde said: “So it’s a threat to Tommy, because his whole campaign is ‘I’m the guy who can win,’ and the reality is, no.  He’s going to have issues in the general election, some pretty significant issues because people are going to dig in to what he’s been doing as a corporate lobbyist for the last 5 or 6 years and there’s real questions finally being brought out about his last couple terms as governor.” [Jerry Bader interview, 7/12/2012]

Hovde Criticized Thompson For Growing Government And Buying Off Public Unions. In a radio interview in July 2012, Hovde said: “I like Tommy, I thought he did a good job on his first couple terms, but his second two terms, and what he did to buy off the public unions and grew the state government by a 118%, you know that’s starting to come out and so I think you got two distinct choices: one a conservative business person who spent their life in the private sector versus Governor Thompson who spent his life in the government.” [Jerry Bader interview, 7/12/2012]

Hovde Criticized Thompson For Supporting Obamacare And Other “Government-Centered Approaches.” In a radio interview in July 2012, Hovde said: “[Thompson} is somebody who takes a government-centered approaches to most of our issues.  He was in support of Obamacare and yet he says he’s not.  I mean he’s been on video talking about it, supporting the mandate itself.  He has to answer for this. Governor Thompson quite often says one thing and says another and people are starting to focus in on that.” [Jerry Bader interview, 7/12/2012]

Hovde Called Thompson A “Career Politician” And “Corporate Lobbyist.” At a press availability in July 2012, Hovde said: “Well, Tommy spend his life in politics, I mean that’s obvious he first was elected in 1966 and has spent his entire life in politics but for the past five-six years where he’s been on a number of boards but he’s been a corporate lobbyist. You know one thing I have been talking about is cronyism, the fact we have so many special interests, be it the big public unions or big giant private corporations that are attacking the financial footing of our country and our government. Yeah of course, Tommy is a career politician; he’s been there since nineteen sixty-six.” [Press availability, 7/12/2012]

Hovde Accused Thompson Of Being A Lobbyist, Saying “I Have Yet To Meet Many Lobbyists That Really Understand The Issues That Are Driving The Business Community.” In a meeting with the Milwaukee Journal Sentinel editorial board in July 2012, Hovde said: “And at the same time, Tommy is of counsel to Akin Gump and he’s a lobbyist.  And I have yet to meet many lobbyists that really understand the issues that are driving the business community.” [Milwaukee Journal Sentinel editorial board, 7/18/2012]

Hovde Attacking Neumann

Hovde Accused Neumann Of Refusing To Take A Stand On Afghanistan. In a radio interview in July 2012, Hovde said: “You ask Mark, where does he stand on the Afghanistan wars? He won’t answer it in the debate.” [Mark Belling interview, 7/10/2012]

Hovde Complained About “Big Spending Republicans” Like Mark Neumann. In a radio interview in July 2012, Hovde said: “We can all talk like Republicans have behaved well for the last decade or two. That’s not true. The Republican party during the 00’s and all the earmarks and Tom DeLay and Denny Hastert and the Abramoff scandal and the bridge to nowhere, which by the way Mark Neumann voted for. When it first came up back in the 90’s, all those things were big spending Republicans that helped get us here.” [Mark Belling interview, 7/10/2012]

Hovde Criticized Neumann For Taking Stimulus Money. In a radio interview in March 2012, Hovde said: “You know, sadly, Mark is taking the same direction that he did with Scott Walker and that’s immediately trying to attack me and it’s just not going to work and it’s very disappointing. Here’s a guy that actually took stimulus money for his solar company, wrote a letter asking for continued stimulus money, and then he has the gumption to make that assertion on me when the banks, the community banks, that I own and control never took a dollar of TARP money.” [WIBB Halvorsen interview, 3/13/2012]

Hovde: Attacking Other Republicans Is “Mark’s MO.” In a radio interview in March 2012, Hovde said: “You know, it’s just disappointing that somebody would come immediately come at a fellow Republican and attack the way he did but, you know, that’s Mark [Neumann]’s MO and I think most people remember how he treated Scott Walker.” [WIBB Halvorsen interview, 3/13/2012]

Hovde Campaign Compared Neumann’s Attacks To His “Negative And Nasty” 2010 Gubernatorial Campaign. In a July 2012 press release, Hovde spokesperson Sean Lansing said, “Mark ran a negative and nasty campaign against Governor Scott Walker in 2010, and he's at it again now that he's polling in the low-teens and single digits in Wisconsin's U.S. Senate race.” [Hovde press release, 7/13/2012]

  • Hovde Campaign: Neumann Told “Vicious Lies” About Scott Walker. In a July 2012 press release, Hovde spokesperson Sean Lansing said, “Congressman Neumann told vicious lies about Scott Walker in 2010 while running a negative and misleading campaign against our governor.” [Hovde press release, 7/13/2012]

Hovde Campaign Said Neumann Voted For Over $20 Billion In Earmarks. In a July 2012 press release, Hovde spokesperson Sean Lansing said, “Congressman Neumann voted for over 2,500 earmarks, totaling nearly $20 billion dollars.” [Hovde press release, 7/13/2012]

Hovde Campaign: “Congressman Neumann Voted For The Bridge To Nowhere.” In a July 2012 press release, Hovde spokesperson Sean Lansing said, “Congressman Neumann voted for the Bridge to Nowhere.” [Hovde press release, 7/13/2012]

Hovde Campaign Said Neumann Took “Over $650,000 In Stimulus Money” And “Lobbied For More.” In a July 2012 press release, Hovde spokesperson Sean Lansing said, “Congressman Neumann took over $650,000 in stimulus money for his green energy companies and lobbied Nancy Pelosi and Harry Reid for more.” [Hovde press release, 7/13/2012]

Hovde Campaign Called Neumann “Washington D.C.’s Handpicked Candidate.” In a July 2012 press release, Hovde spokesperson Sean Lansing said, “There is a reason that Washington D.C.’s handpicked candidate is two-for-six in Wisconsin elections.” Neumann has been endorsed by Club For Growth, a Washington, D.C. PAC. [Hovde press release, 7/13/2012]

Hovde Attacked Neumann For Voting To Raise The Debt Ceiling, Voting For The Bridge To Nowhere, And Taking Stimulus Money. In a radio interview in July 2012, Hovde said: “Mark, give him credit for some of the things he did in Congress, but a lot people forget that Mark voted for the debt ceiling increase four times. He voted for the bridge to nowhere.  Mark has been attacking me constantly and yet he tried to say I took stimulus money when my banks I controlled said I never took a dime and he had a green energy company that took tons of stimulus and wrote a letter to Nancy Pelosi and Harry Reid asking for more.” [Jerry Bader interview, 7/12/2012]

…Even While He Complains About Being The Subject of Negative Attacks

Hovde: “I’ve Been Under Constant Attack By Tommy Thompson Or By Mark Neumann.” In a radio interview in July 2012, Hovde said: “For the last 4 or 5 months, I’ve been under constant attack by Tommy Thompson or by Mark Neumann.  There wasn’t a few days could go by where I wasn’t getting calls by my campaign team, generally at dinner time, saying ‘Ok we got this other crazy thing coming in by reporters that are being floated information. All distortion.’” [Jerry Bader interview, 7/12/2012]

Hovde Said Negative Attacks Is “Par For The Course For The Thompson Campaign.” In a radio interview in July 2012, Hovde said: “They said I’m ugly because they say I attacked him although they don’t say anything that I attacked him on and all they do is attack me. Which is common, par for the course for the Thompson campaign.” [Mitch Henck interview, 7/16/2012]

Hovde Called The Club For Growth Attacks “Ridiculous At Every Single Level.” At a meeting with the Milwaukee Journal Sentinel editorial board, Hovde said: “The attacks by the Club are ridiculous at every single level.  The Club is tied in to Mark because a number of people at the Club worked for Mark, both as his Chief of Staff and one at his home-building company.” [Milwaukee Journal Sentinel editorial board, 7/18/2012]

Hovde Complained About Thompson And Neumann Attacking Him For Being A Hedge Fund Banker. In a radio interview in July 2012, Hovde said: “Well, you know Tommy and Mark Neumann have been attacking me the day that I got into this race, and have been trying to throw mud against the wall. The reality is that I’ve been deeply involved in this state. They constantly want to say that I’m a hedge-fund manager, and yet they don’t pick up on the fact that - and I just released my financial report - that my main business is community banking.” [Mark Belling interview, 7/10/2012]

Hovde Complained About Thompson And Neumann’s Opposition Research. In a radio interview in July 2012, Hovde said: “They’ve had opposition research working on me nonstop overtime, Mark and Tommy. There wasn’t even a week, or every few days, that didn’t go by in the months of March and April where I wasn’t called by some reporter, saying, ‘oh, we’re being floated this by this campaign and that by that campaign.’” [Mark Belling interview, 7/10/2012]

Hovde Complained About Neumann And Thompson Running Attack Ads, Said He Was Staying “Positive.” In a radio interview in July 2012, Hovde said: “Mark Neumann being Mark Neumann, just like he did to Scott Walker, has his buddies Club for Growth getting ready to attack with negative TV ads.  Tommy’s putting out press memos attacking me.  And you know the funny thing is, I’m out there and stay positive the whole time with my television ads, my radio ads, and I’m talking about the issues.” [Vicki McKenna interview, 7/12/2012]

Hovde Accused Thompson And Neumann Of “Slinging Mud” And Then Attacked Their Records. In a television ad released in July 2012, Hovde said: “Mark Neumann and Tommy Thompson are slinging mud to distract from their own weaknesses. Just like Congressman Neumann savaged Scott Walker, now he’s distorting my record. Neumann hopes you’ll forget his four votes to raise and national debt and Tommy Thompson is desperate to hide his support for Obamacare.” [TV Ad: Missed Me, posted 7/20/2012]