Former pro footballer and Eastern Washington farmer Clint Didier has run as a Republican for higher office three times, twice unsuccessfully with the results of his third bid to be determined by voters this November. He is a bold, charismatic and unapologetic representative of a Tea Party movement that believes the Republican establishment is too often part of the problem.
John Boehner is the Speaker of the U.S. House of Representative, having been elected to Congress by the people of Ohio’s 8th Congressional District a dozen times since 1990. He is a consummate negotiator working to leverage Republican control of the House to thwart Democratic grand plans to redesign the economy and society while slowing the rate of deficit spending.
Undeterred by a primary election flame-out in the 2010 U.S. Senate race and a 2012 bid for Washington State Lands Commissioner in which he underperformed all other statewide Republican candidates, Didier stepped forward again this year after long-time Fourth Congressional District Congressman Doc Hastings announced he would not run for another term.
Running an insurgency-styled campaign, Didier grabbed 31.81% of the vote in the August primary, the lion’s share of a fractured ballot featuring 12 candidates, 7 of whom ran as Republicans. Also walking through into the general was former State Director of Agriculture Dan Newhouse, a candidate who Didier quickly moved to cast as the establishment choice.
So, it wasn’t so shocking that in radio ads running this past week, Didier cast Boehner as an adversary, declaring in his own voice to voters that he is the only candidate in the race who will not be a tool of the Speaker. But pictures of Didier and Boehner from 2010 may cause some voters to wonder just how deep those convictions run.
On a Facebook page that was launched and maintained during his 2010 primary election bid for U.S. Senate, Didier appears more than comfortable having his picture taken with Boehner. Because problematic images, once discovered, tend to disappear faster than Mariners closer Fernando Rodney’s command over opposing batters, we captured screengrabs.
Also easy to spot in one of the photos is a Doc Hastings campaign sticker on Didier’s blazer. Just two weeks ago, Didier offered a terse reaction to news of Hastings’s endorsement of Newhouse to replace him. Didier dismissed the outgoing congressman with “the Republican establishment and beltway insiders” and “part of Speaker John Boehner’s leadership team.”
One wonders how long it will take for Didier’s hallmark endorser, former governor and Republican vice presidential candidate Sarah Palin, to fall from his grace considering her recent public apology to the country for the failure to get another favorite Tea Party piñata, Sen. John McCain, elected in the 2008 presidential race.