Updated: 3:44 p.m. | From now until Election Day, comedian Bill Maher has made it his mission to ensure Rep. John Kline, R-Minn., does not come back to Congress.
On Friday evening, Maher announced Kline as the target of his Flip a District campaign after the six-term Republican garnered the most votes from viewers during a live taping of his HBO program, “Real Time with Bill Maher,” at the Warner Theater in Washington, D.C.
"I know what you're thinking: You never heard of John Kline," said Maher, who added Kline is “one of those silent threats you never see coming ... He's not funny. He's just wrong about everything." Maher will periodically travel to the 2nd district to do stand-up routines and talk about the congressman. However, Maher faces a tough challenge in trying to unseat Kline in the conservative-leaning district. The Rothenberg Political Report/Roll Call rates the race as Safe Republican .
Kline's opponent, Democrat Mike Obermueller, released a statement lauding the decision and said it confirmed his own reasons for trying to take Kline out. “Our momentum is building every day. And even with this attention, our efforts won’t change. We’re continuing to build our campaign on the strength of the grassroots organizing we know it will take to win this race,” Obermueller said.
Viewers voted for Kline to be the Flip a District target over three other House Republicans : Renee Ellmers of North Carolina, Blake Farenthold of Texas and Mike Coffman of Colorado.
Coffman was the only candidate in the final four with a competitive race in 2014. Maher said there were thousands of petitions for the Colorado Republican, and hinted that the viewers did not pick the best opportunity to flip a district by nothing that they “did not pick the biggest clown.”
But Maher did not waste any time targeting Kline.
The comedian recited a litany of items that he said Kline was wrong about, including voting to repeal the Affordable Care Act, his vote during the partial government shutdown, denying funding for climate change research, and failing to adequately address the rising student debt. Maher charged that Kline, chairman of the House Education and the Workforce Committee, is " the champion of for-profit colleges"
Though Kline will be in Maher’s cross-hairs until November, the comedian was sure to note that all of the Flip a District candidates should be ousted, saying “In my book you're all losers.”
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