- Associated Press - Tuesday, July 1, 2014

DES MOINES, Iowa (AP) - Gov. Terry Branstad says the fact that his campaign bought the rights to the website hatchvernon.com and parodies his opponent Democratic Sen. Jack Hatch and his running mate Monica Vernon is just politics.

The Branstad campaign owns the website that features pictures of Hatch and Vernon and negative comments suggesting their vision includes raising taxes and passing unbalanced budgets.

The website tells instructs readers on how to join the Branstad campaign.

At his weekly news conference Monday Branstad defended the tactic as “the kind of stuff that happens all the time” in politics.

His campaign also tweets sarcasm and jabs from the Twitter account @HatchVernon .



Branstad says Republicans are getting smarter and more nimble in an area of social media campaigning in which Democrats once had an advantage.

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