This is odd enough that I’m wondering if there’s some strategic angle I’m overlooking. Wonders the city boy: Is bartering still common in rural areas? With … doctors? (Answer: Maybe!) That is to say, is this some strange play for, er, the farm vote or something? The left’s been wetting itself over the story for more than a week, starting with this piece at TPM on April 12 when Lowden mentioned “bartering” as one way to drive down medical costs. Her campaign quickly followed up with a statement saying she meant to say haggling (or “bargaining,” possibly), which seemed to have defused it. Then, a few days ago, she brought it up again in the clip you’ll find below, replete with a soundbite about chickens that was kooky enough for the Dems to rush out a website mocking her for it. Then, just today, when her campaign was pressed on it again, they responded with this:

“Americans are struggling to pay for their health care, and in order to afford coverage we must explore all options available to drive costs down. Bartering with your doctor is not a new concept. There have been numerous reports as to how negotiating with your doctor is an option and doctors have gone on the record verifying this.

“Unfortunately, Harry Reid’s failed leadership forces us to take drastic measures. The fact remains that instead of producing a health care solution Americans support, Harry Reid spends his time focusing on attacking his biggest threat to another six years in Washington, Sue Lowden.”

So … yeah, she supports bartering. Question: Am I missing something here? This won’t stop me from supporting her over the guy who gifted us with the trillion-dollar boondoggle to end all boondoggles, but in fairness, had Reid said something like this, we’d have already had several thousand-comment threads goofing on him for it. What gives?