Kline decries Democratic efforts against him

U.S. Rep. John Kline at an Eagan Chamber of Commerce event today (MPR Photo/Brett Neely)

Democrats are hoping to channel the tea party’s 2009 playbook by urging supporters to challenge Republican members of Congress on various policy issues during the five week summer recess. Among those members targeted by Democrats are Minnesota U.S. Reps. John Kline and Erik Paulsen according to a list obtained by the Capitol Hill newspaper Roll Call.

The newspaper reports that Democrats will share Republicans’ public events with state parties and liberal outside groups in order to encourage picketing and what’s known in Washington-speak as “earned media,” events that draw free media coverage.

Kline, who represents the 2nd District and was attending an Eagan Chamber of Commerce event Thursday, said his constituents were tired of endless campaigning.

“It’s a little bit of a shame to get engaged in campaigning this far out,” said Kline, who added, “I can’t control what [Democrats] do.”

Democrats have been focusing attention on Kline and Paulsen for much of the past year after both representative’s districts voted narrowly for President Obama last November. Both are viewed by Democrats as potentially cooperative on topics such as immigration reform.