This is politics in the age of Twitter. Fighting a close congressional race in Virginia, Democratic incumbent Tom Perriello releases a negative ad about his Republican opponent, Robert Hurt. A Hurt staffer takes to Twitter to call the ad "desperate," and a Periello staffer responds by calling her a carpetbagger.
That is until National Republican Congressional Committee Southeast spokesman Andy Seré, in the words of Gawker, "chime[d] in by going completely insane."
"@VotePerriello you should fire your out-of-district staff or else everyone will think you're a hypocrite, Tom," tweeted Seré after posting the home addresses and phone numbers of six allegedly out-of-district Perriello campaign staffers in prior tweets.
Seré grew up in West University and a graduate of the University of Texas. (Though unlike him, we'll refrain from publishing his parents' address to prove it.)
His tweets have drawn ire from the Periello campaign, which has challenged Hurt not to accept NRCC money until Seré is fired for his actions, and is lobbying Twitter to ban Seré for violating their terms of service — printing private information about an individual (like an address) without their permission.
Seré did not return calls from CultureMap seeking comment. The tweets on his account posting the addresses have been deleted.
To make matters worse, the Perriello campaign has reason to be extra-sensitive about private information being made public. In March, after a Tea Party activist posted online what he thought was the congressman's address, threatening letters appeared and a gas line was cut, filling the home with potentially poisonous and flammable gas. The home actually belonged to Perriello's brother, who has four children under the age of 8.
According to The Washington Post, Virginia's Repuiblican Attorney General Ken Cuccinelli called posting a home address on the Internet "way over the line.
"I don't think it's close,'' he said. "It's an appalling approach. It's not civil discourse, it's an invitation to intimidation and it's totally unacceptable."
In it, Seré made several references to Tennessee congressional hopeful Roy Herron which the interviewer described as innuendo to imply Herron is gay based on blog entries about fitness and his support for gay adoptions. TPM also noted that Seré and the NRCC have also sent out e-mails comparing Herron to gay Massachusetts Rep. Barney Frank and asking "why can't Roy Herron just be straight with West and Middle Tennesseans ...?"