Now that the fishing opener is pretty much history, it’s time to say that the Seifert Fishing Opener was a fiasco. This is what made it a fiasco:

It’s one thing for a candidate to hold a mock fishing opener. It’s a bit gimmicky but people aren’t likely to remember a stunt like that a month from now. It’s another to offer reporters free hotel rooms. That isn’t a gimmick. That’s a foolish stunt that’s sure to get Capitol reporters upset.

Here’s a little insight for Seifert’s campaign: This was foolish on multiple fronts. First, if reporters were interested in attending, they wouldn’t accept the offer for fear that they’d look compromised. Reporters have expense accounts for things like this.

Second, it’s foolish because it’s giving free ammunition to the DFL and the Alliance for a Better Minnesota. Even if Team Seifert made a sincere offer, which I believe they did, the reality is that the DFL and ABM don’t care. They’ll highlight this while they’re smearing Seifert.

This too-clever-by-half stunt carried significant downside with it but little upside. Had the Seifert campaign just done the fishing opener, ABM would’ve had to make something up to smear him. Instead, the Seifert campaign gift-wrapped this present for them. The only thing they didn’t do for the DFL is deliver it on a silver platter.

Third, this isn’t a net plus for Seifert with the Capitol press corps. It’s possible it’ll have the opposite effect. The old saying that there’s no such thing as bad press is BS. In this instance, the buzz won’t help the Seifert campaign.

This alone won’t prevent Seifert from winning the GOP endorsement. It just means people will enter the Convention questioning if he’ll make other unforced errors.

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