It's only September, and already the sign-whining has begun.
In an email sent to supporters Friday, the Vermont Republican Party used a vandalized Randy Brock lawn sign to solicit donations to the party. Peculiarly, party chairman Jack Lindley seemed to draw a connection in the email between the vandalism and Brock's political opponent, Democratic Gov. Peter Shumlin.
"In so many ways what you see is symbolic of what is wrong in Vermont. And wrong about Governor Shumlin," he wrote. "The arrogance of power. His 'my way or the highway' mentality; his arrogant refusal to listen to the ideas of others; his refusal to debate Randy Brock."
In an interview with Seven Days, Lindley took his almost-accusation a tiny bit further.
"I don't know if this is something being put on by the Democrat party or what it is," he said. "Obviously the command and control is the guy running for governor. And his staff and his reelection campaign. I'm really disappointed in them."
Wait, what? Does he have any evidence whatsoever that Shummy or the Dems had anything to do with it?
"I have evidence it is somebody other than a Republican that's doing that," he said. "Well, Randy Brock doesn't run around ripping up signs. There is no reason for us to be ripping signs."
Perhaps even more peculiar was a reference Lindley made to Brock's race at the start of the email:
"The Brock sign you see was destroyed less than 48 hours after it was erected," Lindley wrote. "This is how someone chose to show their respect for Randy Brock, an African-American Vietnam veteran who earned a Bronze Star, a self-made businessman who rose from blue color [sic] roots and a man who served as Vice-Chairman of the United States Military Academy at West Point."
Asked if he was suggesting Brock's race had anything to do with the vandalism, Lindley said, "It's pretty hard to tell, but I wouldn't rule out anything as a motive. If I can catch the little skunks, I will."
We considered calling the Shumlin campaign for comment, but decided not to waste their time.