A Project of The Annenberg Public Policy Center

Jerry Brown: ‘A Legacy of Failure?’

Republican Meg Whitman is making false claims about Democrat Jerry Brown’s “lifetime in politics” in an attack ad, her first TV spot of the general election campaign. The two are battling to become the next governor of California. The ad claims that “crime soared” while Brown was mayor of Oakland. That’s false. …

It’s True: Massages, Saunas For Inmates

With the June 8 Nevada primary nearing, there was one TV ad in the Republican Senate race that caught our attention. It’s so outlandish that we thought it couldn’t possibly be true. Did former Nevada Assemblywoman Sharron Angle – a Republican backed by the Tea Party Express and the fiscally conservative Club for Growth — sponsor legislation to create a drug rehab program for state prisoners that included saunas and massage therapy? And was that program developed by the Church of Scientology?

A Mis-tweet from McMahon

Linda McMahon’s U.S. Senate campaign recently used the social networking site Twitter to misrepresent former Rep. Robert Simmons’ position on tax credits for businesses and the dividend tax. McMahon and Simmons are battling in Connecticut to become the GOP nominee for Chris Dodd’s Senate seat.
Shawn McCoy, deputy communications director for the McMahon campaign, tweeted the following on May 11:

@RobSimmons supports hiking the dividends tax and opposes biz tax credits. No wonder CT lost 15,000 jobs while he was biz advocate

But Simmons does support giving tax credits to businesses and extending the Bush tax cuts including the dividend tax,

Tussling Over TARP

A recent TV ad from Arkansas Lt. Governor Bill Halter claims that Democratic Sen. Blanche Lincoln "says she voted against bailing out Wall Street." That’s not what Lincoln said. The two are campaigning in the Democratic primary for the Senate.
Halter’s ad refers to a Lincoln campaign ad from March in which she said she has voted against "giving more money to Wall Street."
Lincoln never denied voting in favor of the 2008 Troubled Assets Relief Program,

A False Tax Attack

A new Democratic attack ad accuses a Republican House candidate in Hawaii of signing a pledge protecting tax breaks for sending jobs overseas. It could be a prototype of future attack ads against any number of other Republican House members and candidates, most of whom have signed …

Crist, Rubio Ad War

Florida Gov. Charlie Crist once looked like he’d surely get the GOP nomination in the race to replace outgoing Sen. Mel Martinez. But it’s the former Florida state House speaker, Republican Marco Rubio, who’s currently positioned as the front-runner.
With several months to go before the August primary, Crist released his first TV ad last week hitting his chief opponent for having been a "registered lobbyist" and using "Republican political donations on his lavish lifestyle."

It’s true that Rubio was a registered lobbyist in Florida’s Miami-Dade County for several years —

And Here We Go: Attack Ad Cites Health Care Vote

Republican businessman Scott Sipprelle, who is running to unseat Democratic Rep. Rush Holt of New Jersey this fall, has launched one of the first TV ads attacking an incumbent on the recent health care vote.

In the 30-second spot, which is also the first TV ad of his campaign, Sipprelle says, "Rush Holt and Nancy Pelosi ignored you" and supported a "trillion dollar health care bill [that] creates a massive new federal bureaucracy that will hurt the quality of care and saddle us with more debt and higher taxes."

What’s in a Number?

The National Republican Congressional Committee has released a new ad attacking Democratic Rep. Tom Perriello of Virginia for voting with "(Barack) Obama and Nancy Pelosi" for the Waxman-Markey energy bill. It’s part of a broader effort to target several Democratic members.

The ad says the bill will result in lost jobs and cost "middle class families" $1,870 a year. That sounds pretty dire, until you consider that this week we posted an item about the Office of the Republican Whip Eric Cantor’s claim that the same bill would "impose a national energy tax of up to $3,100."

Campaign 2010 Begins

Here we go again. The first round of attack ads in the 2010 midterm elections was announced this week by the Democratic Congressional Campaign Committee. Its new radio spots accuse 28 Republican House members variously of voting against tax breaks for working people, voting against money for schools, voting against …

Let Election 2010 Begin

Believe it or not, ads for the midterm elections are on the air already. The Democratic Congressional Campaign Committee announced radio ads this week that attack 28 House Republicans for voting against such how-could-they-possibly-oppose-them measures as “tax breaks … for American workers” and creating and saving “over 390,000 New York jobs.” But, as we pointed out today on our main site, these ads don’t tell the whole story.
Most of the radio spots refer to votes against the massive stimulus bill,