Attack-Ad Fact-Check

Third-Parties Get in on Election Attack-Ads

Tamara Damante, KESQ News Channel 3 News Reporter, tdamante@kesq.com
POSTED: 03:18 PM PDT Oct 01, 2012    UPDATED: 07:22 PM PDT Oct 01, 2012 
PALM DESERT, Calif. -

We are counting down to election day and with only 36 days left, the T.V. ad war is in full swing especially, as the race for the 36th Congressional district heats up. Congresswoman Mary Bono-Mack, her democratic challenger, Dr. Raul Ruiz and third party political action committees are buying up T.V. time. Last week we took a look at a third party ad, attacking Ruiz. Now we are lookin into the "truth" behind one of those ads attacking Bono-Mack.


The ad opens by stating, "Some politicians are really cut out for Washington. And the way she looks after special interests, politician Mary Bono Mack fits right in, taking insurance industry money and voting their way."

A group calling itself "The Democratic Congressional Campaign Committee" paid for the ad. We investigated and found it's the official campaign arm of the Democrats, in the House. New York representative, Steve Israel is the chairman, who served as the DCCC's national recruitment chairman, in 2010. The committee announced the launch of its first independent expenditure campaign T.V. ad on the internet, describing the ad as, "...exposing Congresswoman Mary Bono Mack's record of siding with special interests over seniors. "

The ad goes on to attack the Congresswoman, "Voting to end Medicare. Leaving seniors at the mercy of insurers paying $6,400.00 more."

We contacted the Annenberg Public Policy Center, home of FactCheck.org and FlackCheck.org, tools designed to check the reliability of third party ads. When we asked about this latest ad, attacking the Congresswoman, Dr. Kathleen Hall Jamieson says, "The claim "Voting to end Medicare" is one of our FactCheck.org 2011 Whoppers of the Year."

Eugene Kiely of FactCheck.org adds, "It is also bogus to say she is leaving seniors at the mercy of insurers paying $6,400.00 more."

Dr. Jamieson goes on to say, the ad is referring to Paul Ryan's 2011 budget resolution, which the Congresswoman supported, and has been superseded in the latest budget resolution by a Medicare plan that the congressional budget office says might cost seniors more, but they aren't sure and can't say how much.

The add ends stating, "Cutting deals for special interests. Cutting benefits for us. Mary Bono Mack. Time to cut our losses.The Democratic Congressional Campaign Committee is responsible for the content of this advertising." }

The Democratic political action committee, "House Majority", put aside a quarter of a million dollars to buy T.V. time.