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Dan Adler, “Mensch” for Congress, shakes up race

by Jonah Lowenfeld

May 13, 2011 | 3:35 pm

In an attempt to distinguish himself from the other 15 candidates running in next week’s election for the open seat in California’s 36th Congressional district, Democrat Dan Adler launched a new ad campaign that has set off a flurry of controversy across the blogosphere.

In the most widely noticed advertisement—the clips caught the attention of everyone from a politics blogger with Salon to Glenn Beck to Talking Points Memo—Adler, a former entertainment industry executive draws a parallel between the minority status of Jews and Asians.

The spot, which makes clear that Adler is Jewish and his wife is Korean, features a middle-aged Asian woman saying, “We minorities should stick together.” She speaks in an overwhelmingly thick accent, from behind the counter of a dry cleaning store.

Talking Points Memo went out on a limb, calling it “possibly offensive.”

Another advertisement addresses concerns that Adler, who was a late entry into the race to replace Jane Harman and has never before held political office, might not have what it takes to accomplish things in the remaining months of Harman’s term in congress.

As his young son tells viewers in the advertisement, “My dad gets sh*t done.”

Patty Duke echoes the same message in a third spot.

For more on Dan Adler and the 36th Congressional race, click here.

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