The latest negative ad offering by the Rob Barber campaign has drawn criticism from all corners. The new TV ad from the House Majority Pac uses a snippet from a speech Jesse Kelly made long before Congresswoman Gabrielle Giffords was shot by a deranged Jared Loughner. TucsonCitizen.com editor, Mark Evans wrote, “Barber is going to have to disown what a BS misleading POS ad this is.”
Giffords whose recovery and spirit are considered nothing short of courageous by everyone, including Kelly himself, is being used as a source of support for Barber in the ad.
The creators use a small portion of a speech Kelly delivered to supporters at a 2010 picnic in Continental Ranch. Candidate for Pima County Board of Supervisors James Kelley said of the ad, “The ad itself identifies it as a 2010 statement. But people are going to hear the statement not see 2010.” The ad does show 2010 in the upper left hand corner, but one ad viewer said, “there is no clue why that number is on the screen.”
In the ad, Kelly is criticizing Giffords shortly after he lost to her by a narrow margin. “She stands there with that smile and pretends to be some kind of hometown hero.” At the time of the speech, many Arizonans were disappointed with her lack of support for a secure border, and failure to connect with her constituents.
“Before she was shot, Jesse was correct to challenge her leadership, specifically concerning ObamaCare which all TeaParty members opposed. She and her leadership misled us when they had her say, “I have to sign this bill because it will cut the deficit by $100 billion”. Even a novice who had not read the whole bill would know that adding 150 new agencies could NEVER reduce the deficit by one penny,” said Carolyn Cox Chairwoman of the Pima GOP.
“We all know no one read that bill before it was signed. In comparison, Medicare was debated for seven (7) years before it was signed. Shame on President Obama, House Speaker Pelosi, and every congressman and senator in the March 2010 Congress,” Cox concluded.
As a result of her narrow win, Giffords did increase her visibility in the area. She was shot while conducting voter reach out at a Safeway. The congresswoman called the event, Congress On Your Corner.”
According to the Washington Post, “a look at a longer video of the August 2010 event, provided by House Majority PAC, makes clear that Kelly was arguing that Giffords had presented herself as a “hero” for backing Obama agenda items such as the national health care overhaul.
The full version of Kelly’s 2010 remarks:
“Gabrielle Giffords is a big-spending, San Francisco liberal. That’s what Gabrielle Giffords is. And she has the gall to talk about us as extreme. Extreme! Did any of you vote for the government takeover of health care? I didn’t think so! Did any of you decide that the government should run the energy sector? Double the debts, double the deficits, double the unemployment? No! Giffords did that. And now she stands there with that smile and pretends to be some kind of hometown hero. She’s a hero of nothing. She’s brought bankruptcy to this nation. And we are going to bring unemployment to her.”
Polls show Barber and Kelly in a dead heat in the CD8 Special Election.