At some point, the Tea Party stalwarts are going to have to accept the fact that Christine O’Donnell is an untrustworthy, credential fabricating dud, much like Mark Kirk, the G.O.P. Senate candidate in Illinois who has been caught embellishing his resume with fantasy and exaggeration.
O’Donnell is arguably even worse than Kirk. She claimed for years that she had graduated from college before she actually finished her course work. At another time, she suggested she was seeking a Master’s degree at Princeton, but later admitted that she hadn’t taken a single Princeton graduate course.
O’Donnell’s LinkedIn bio page lists University of Oxford as one of the schools she has attended, where, she says, she studied “Post Modernism in the New Millennium.” The course was really conducted by something called the Phoenix Institute, which merely rented space at Oxford. When the Washington Post contacted the woman who oversaw Phoenix Institute’s summer program at Oxford she agreed that O’Donnell’s claim about studying at Oxford was “misleading.”
I know that O’Donnell is an attractive dark horse candidate in theory, and that her ultra conservative views on social issues and fiscal responsibility warm the cockles of Tea Party hearts. But integrity and honesty dictate that she be held to some basic ethical standards. It is already clear that O’Donnell has misused campaign contributions, perhaps criminally so. Now it is clear that she tries to sneak fake credentials by the press and those who support her, which is proof of both dishonesty and a cement head.
The Tea Party would gain a measure of respect, at least from me, if they had the courage and principle to declare that a young woman who can’t balance a checkbook and lies repeatedly about her education is not a good candidate to fix what ails Washington, or fix anything at all, except maybe a horse race.
She’s terrible, guys. Give it up.
UPDATE: The very next day after this was written, it was discovered that another educational credential on O’Donnell’s profile was false. Talking Points Memo revealed that…
“Claremont Graduate University tells TPM that Senate candidate Christine O’Donnell did not attend the Southern California school despite listing it under education on her LinkedIn profile…Turns out O’Donnell did receive a fellowship from a conservative think tank named the Claremont Institute, also in Claremont, Ca. but not affiliated with Claremont Graduate University.”
If O’Donnell and her supporters play to form, they will accuse the media and political foes of “distorting her record.” This is pretty brazen, as the only one distorting O’Donnell’s record is O’Donnell.