Kline spokesman Troy Young accused the congressman's opponent, former state Rep. Mike Obermueller (DFL), of “promoting” some of Maher’s more controversial comments and views by “essentially naming [him] as his campaign manager.”
“Minnesotans are tired of sleazy and slimy politics, but DFL candidate Mike Obermueller certainly isn’t. Maher saluted 9/11 terrorists and called our troops ‘cowardly,’ he repeatedly has degraded Christians and calls them ‘schizophrenic,’ and he repugnantly compared special-needs children to ‘dogs,’ yet Mike Obermueller promotes this behavior essentially naming Maher as his campaign manager,” Young said in a statement.
Maher announced Kline had been picked by viewers as the Republican incumbent for him to target with his campaign. He plans to campaign against Kline and could spend a significant sum to defeat him.
Obermueller said in a statement that Maher’s pick of Kline proves his race is competitive.
"This news confirms what we've been hearing more and more of each day: folks in the 2nd district are tired of John Kline, and they’re ready to kick him out office," Obermueller said. "People are fired up and are organizing across the district to remove him from a seat he’s become too comfortable in."
Despite representing a swing suburban Twin Cities district, Kline isn’t seen as vulnerable this cycle. He’s expected to largely coast in his rematch with Obermueller, having defeated the Democrat by eight points in 2012 during a much more favorable year for Democrats.