The Campaign Spot

Russ Carnahan’s Reelection Bid May Be Taking on Water

Democratic congressman Russ Carnahan’s boat, Attractive Nuisance, lives up to its name:

[Republican Ed] Martin sent out a release accusing Carnahan of attempting to dodge taxes by parking his boat across the river in Illinois.

If the vessel – a 42-foot Chris Craft cruiser – were docked in Missouri, Carnahan could owe property taxes on the boat. But, because it’s docked at the Alton Marina, Missouri property taxes are not a concern.

. . . Alton Marina, near the foot of the Clark Bridge on the Mississippi River, is one of, if not the closest, marinas suitable to park a boat the size of Carnahan’s.

Still, this is not the first time Carnahan’s river cruiser has raised questions. In 2004, Carnahan — then a state legislator running for Congress — was fined for not registering the boat.

At the time, Carnahan said he was testing the boat engine’s when he was cited by the Missouri Water Patrol.

The boat, however, is still not registered. Its Coast Guard registration expired in 2008. According to the state Conservation Police, the boat is not registered in Illinois, either.

. . . Carnahan’s new campaign manager, Angela Barranco, said the reason the boat — built in 1968 — is not registered is because it is currently inoperable.

Insert sinking-ship metaphor here.

This is likely to be an expensive race, but Republican Ed Martin is doing rather well, having raised $582,276. In terms of cash-on-hand, the incumbent barely leads, $520,545 to $478,779.