During the 1986 general election, Carville helped Bob Casey Sr. win election as the 42nd Governor of Pennsylvania by defeating his democratic primary opponent, Ed Rendell, in early 1986, and general election opponent Dick Thornburgh's lieutenant governor, Bill Scranton, who had taken the lead in the polls after announcing that his campaign was pulling all negative ads, and challenged Mr. Casey to do the same. However, the Scranton campaign misstepped by sending a mailer to 600,000 Republican voters that featured a letter from Scranton's father. An additional brochure harshly attacking Casey's ethics was also included. Carville began counterpunching. He contacted journalists and characterized the mailer as outrageous. Scranton claimed that he didn't know about the mailing. So Carville ordered 600,000 blank envelopes, loaded them up on a truck – mountains of envelopes – and dumped them on a street corner near Mr. Scranton's campaign headquarters. T. V. cameras captured the campaign asking: "How could you send out this many envelopes and not know about it?" Three weeks before the election, a poster appeared statewide, depicting Scranton as a "long-haired, dope smoking hippie. " The race was virtually tied until five days before the election when Carville launched the "guru," TV commercial that portrayed Scranton as having been a regular drug user during the 1960s and mocked Scranton's interest in transcendental meditation and his ties to Maharishi Mahesh Yogi. The image of Scranton as a meditating, long haired, dope-smoking hippie, with a background of sitar music, was credited with tipping the scales against Scranton in the socially conservative rural sections of Pennsylvania where Carville selectively decided to run the "guru" TV commercial. Casey went on to win the election by a narrow margin of 79,216 out of 3. 3 million total votes cast.
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