Jerry Moran responds to April Fools joke

Like reporters, politicians have to be wary of April Fools' Day hijinks. The latest is Rep. Jerry Moran (R-Kan.), who is running for retiring Sen. Sam Brownback's (R) Senate seat next year.

The Hutchinson News, a large paper in Moran's congressional district, reported yesterday that Moran responded to an apparent April Fools' joke on a liberal website. The liberal Kansas Jackass blog wrote a post on Wednesday with the headline: "BREAKING: Moran withdraws from U.S. Senate Race." The post then depicts a fictional press release from Moran's campaign staff.

It appears that Moran's camp didn't enjoy the humor. The News reported that his campaign released a statement disputing the blog post.

"We at the campaign appreciate a good joke but would remind people that the lesson today is that you shouldn't always believe what you read ... especially on an extremely partisan Democrat blog," Trost said, according to the News.

Rep. Todd Tiahrt (R), who is also running for the Senate, pounced on the whole exchange. His campaign sought to capitalize on any perception that Moran might pull out of the race.
"One of the most frequent questions Congressman Tiahrt gets asked as he travels around the state is when do you think Jerry Moran will get out of the Senate race," Tiahrt's campaign manager, Robert Noland, told the News. "Apparently there was a little too much truth in the April Fool's Day joke for the Moran campaign to stomach."

I don't quite know what to make of all this. Maybe call it "April Fools rapid response"?

jeremy.jacobs@thehill.com