Comic relief? No, just more bizarre politicking from Jack Wayne Chappell

Jack Wayne Chappell received less than 2,000 votes when his name appeared — again — on a congressional ballot this spring.

So it's difficult to take Chappell too seriously when he said, in an email Tuesday, that he plans to run as a write-in in Idaho's 2nd Congressional District. Especially since, in his own words, Chappell says he will declare as a write-in "in order to get a few more laughs."

Well, Chappell got the attention he seems to crave Tuesday, since his email signed off with this remark directed at 2nd District incumbent Mike Simpson: "You can't even be a duck in this world without somebody wanting to shoot you."

Melissa Davlin, the political reporter with The Times-News in Twin Falls, picked up on this quote. In her blog, she questioned aloud whether it was a poorly chosen comment or a veiled threat. (Personally, I'd read it as the former, but I don't think it was out of line to pose the question.)

In a rambling and bizarre email to Davlin — which hew chose to share with reporters across the district — Chappell denied he was making a threat.

"How you could remotely construe a humorous remark like, 'You can't even be a duck in this world without somebody wanting to shoot you' as a veiled threat from a political crackpot shows not only that you lack any trace of a sense of humor, it also indicates that you have no regard for the First Amendment."

Yeah, this campaign is off to a laugh-a-minute start.

As I've said before, Chappell is a gadfly and a repeat candidate. He never seems much interested in talking issues, but seems more interested in calling attention to himself. Tuesday's back and forth was consistent with his character.

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"....back in forth..." ?

Talk about comic relief!


Kevin Richert
editorial page editor