Last updated on August 4, 2020
Sen. Martha McSally has a new campaign ad featuring a cancer survivor who talks about how her “path collided” with McSally, whom she describes as a champion for protecting those with pre-existing medical conditions.
The emotional television ad, which started Thursday, doesn’t disclose that the woman worked for McSally’s congressional office and as a campaign staffer over the years or that in 2014 she helped defend McSally’sattackson the Affordable Care Act and roll its coverage protections back.
In the ad, Kristen Douglas talks about her severe health issues during her late 20s. After a year of testing, doctors found a mass in her brain and, with medical bills mounting, she said she got a letter from her insurance company dropping her.
She urges people to vote for Sen. Martha McSally, R-Ariz., whom she assures will protect those with pre-existing conditions.
What the ad doesn’t say is that the speaker, Whitney Lawrence, is the former statewide field director for former Sen. Jeff Flake, R-Ariz., before he abandoned his re-election bid in October 2017.
It’s also the second health care ad in four months from McSally’s campaign that involves a testimonial from a former GOP political operative, though viewers wouldn’t know it from the ads alone.
After Perdue spoke directly to the camera about the need to lower the cost of health care and prescription drugs, Janelle King, a woman identified only as a resident of Sandy Springs, Georgia, praised Perdue.
“We need this done. And if anyone can do it, it’s Sen. Perdue,” King said. “What a difference he’s making for us.”
At no time did the ad disclose that King previously worked as the deputy state and data director of the Georgia Republican Party, a field director for former Rep. Karen Handel’s campaign, and as a consultant for Georgia Gov. Brian Kemp’s 2018 campaign, according to her LinkedIn page.
Sen. Susan Collins of Maine, a Republican facing a tough re-election race, has run numerous ads over the last three months featuring testimonials from more than 20 people who were presented as ordinary Mainers — but in fact had close ties to the state’s Republican Party or to Collins herself. While such deception is not obviously illegal, it’s intentionally misleading and suggests that Collins has had trouble attracting supporters outside a tight circle of Maine Republicans.
This wasn’t the first time that Collins’ 2020 campaign has committed an unforced video error. Last summer her campaign drew sardonic criticism after posting several minutes of B-roll of the senator meeting with Mainers in factories, a classroom, a kitchen and so on. The video was mocked as a transparent gift of content for outside groups, which could amount to a campaign finance violation.
This year, however, the campaign might catch flak for a July 30 campaign ad that features lobsterman and small business owner Wayne Parry accusing Sara Gideon, speaker of the Maine House and Collins’ Democratic opponent, of “not being honest” about her criticism of the Paycheck Protection Program.
The ad informs the viewer that Parry is a lobsterman from the town of Arundel, but does not mention that Parry also served as a Republican State House representative from 2010 to 2018, and is on the ballot as a candidate again in 2020.
Anyone else seeing a pattern here? It says a lot about you when you can’t find real constituents to advocate for your record. By the way, strike another blow for Collins campaign:
House Speaker and US Senate candidate Sara Gideon received an endorsement Friday from the Maine State Council of Machinists, which represents Bath Iron Works’ largest unions.
The council represents BIW’s Local S6, which has been on strike for six weeks, as well as Local S7.
Gideon has visited Local S6 union members at the picket line multiple times since the strike started after the union rejected a contract offer from the shipyard. During a July 25 strike rally, Gideon said she has supported the union “for every one of the 34 days of this strike, and we will continue to do so until you are able to go back to work with the contract and benefits that you deserve.
Let’s keep up the momentum to keep Maine Blue. Click below to donate and get involved with Gideon, Biden and their fellow Maine Democrats campaigns:
The Politicus is a collaborative political community that facilitates content creation directly on the site. Our goal is to make the political conversation accessible to everyone.Any donations we receive will go into writer outreach. That could be advertising on Facebook, Twitter, and Reddit or person-to-person outreach on College campuses. Please help if you can: