By MIKE BAKER, Associated Press Writer Tue Oct 17, 9:24 PM ET
WINSTON-SALEM, N.C. - U.S. Rep. Brad Miller (news, bio, voting record) chuckled through most of the first debate with his Republican challenger, who led a tense and often awkward
Vernon Robinson, who has run a series of brash advertisements about the two-term Democratic congressman, charged that Miller wants to import homosexuals to the United States and supported scientific studies that would pay teenage girls to watch pornography.
"Those are San Francisco values, not North Carolina values," said Robinson, repeating a common theme of his campaign.
A bemused Miller countered by blasting Robinson for a campaign mailer that implicitly suggested the congressman was gay and criticized Miller for being "childless." Miller's wife had a hysterectomy more than two decades ago.
"It's clear that Vernon Robinson is obsessed with sex," Miller said after the 40-minute debate, which also touched on issues ranging from Iraq to North Korea to illegal immigration.
................................................. Robinson, a former university business professor, began his political career in 1988 with an unsuccessful run for the state Senate. He's entered about a dozen races for office, including North Carolina superintendent of public instruction, the state House and his local board of education.
Robinson's deep conservative convictions helped him win a spot on the Winston-Salem City Council in 1997. While he earned re-election four years later, he was ousted last year after he erected a 1-ton monument of the Ten Commandments in front of city hall.
What is amazing is that he keeps getting money for these runs, even though his campaigning style can best be defined as offensive. Dragging Miller's wife into this, calling him gay. I mean he even called the married father Kos gay, libel by any definition.
He has little to no chance to win these races. He's an extremist, and he's running as a black man needing white voters. So how does he win? He doesn't. Robinson seems to be one of those people who seem to be uncomfortable in being black, so he wants to be an exception. So while he mocks Mexicans, Jesse Jackson and Al Sharpton, people laugh at him behind his back.