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Davis ad exposes Shelton as a doctor who doesn’t care

The Tarrant County-based Senate District 10 campaign is the most important and closely watched State legislative race in Texas. Incumbent Democratic Senator Wendy Davis has established a much larger local donor base and raised significantly more money than her opponent, GOP House back bencher Mark Shelton (HD97 – Fort Worth). Shelton is, at best, a default candidate for Republicans, but he has been able to count upon Austin-based lobby organizations and partisan State Republican leaders for support.
Today, both candidates began airing new ads that reflect their different approaches to the race.

Davis ad exposes Shelton as a doctor who doesn’t care

The ad that began airing today is both visually striking and starkly exposes Mark Shelton as unconcerned about the identification and prosecution of sexual predators and uncaring about the trauma suffered by rape victims. The claims in the ad are confirmed with citations. Moreover, Shelton’s vote to shield rapists from identification and prosecution is condemned by a sexual assault victim and a victim’s right advocate identified as Christi, who says, “Mark Shelton could have helped women like me, but he didn’t. Wendy Davis did.”

Shelton attack ad is predictable, amateurish and misleading

The ad Shelton released today is strategically and stylistically the polar opposite of the Davis ad. Shelton’s ad features paid actors mugging to the camera with exaggerated expressions combined with more cut outs and clip art. The ad attacks Davis with typical Republican versus Democrat charges, but provides no citations to support the claims, all of which are misleading, while some are outright false.

Shelton ad fails the fact test

Ad Copy: “Wendy Davis is a life-long tax liberal.”

Fact Check – Broad and False

This is the typical charge of any Republican running against a Democrat. Wendy Davis by any fair measure reflects the ideological middle ground. This is confirmed by the endorsements she has received from over 40 business leaders in Tarrant County, endorsements from local and state police and firefighter organizations and the Texas Veterans Commission giving Davis their Leadership Award. Shelton may be a far right conservative, but relative to other public officials, Davis is a centrist.

Ad Copy: “As state senator, she voted for higher taxes and against balanced budgets.”

Fact Check – False

The budget presented for vote in the Legislature was not balanced. In fact, the budget approved by the Legislature was over $15 billion short of being balanced. Wendy Davis’ vote against the budget was not a vote against a BALANCED budget, and Mark Shelton’s vote for the budget was not a vote for a BALANCED budget. Quite simply, the budget was not balanced.

Ad Copy: “And Davis was the only Fort Worth Council Member to vote for higher property taxes on seniors.”

Fact Check – False

While serving on the Fort Worth City Council in 2007, Wendy Davis voted “no” to freezing seniors’ home property taxes. The tax break was in addition to exemptions already available to seniors. (Source: Fort Worth council gives OK to senior tax freeze. Fort Worth Star-Telegram, March 7, 2007)

Ad Copy: “In 2002, newspaper readers named Davis the ‘politician most likely to sell grandma to the highest bidder.'”

Fact Check – Misleading and incomplete

The newspaper being cited is the Fort Worth Weekly, which gives tongue-in-cheek awards each year. The ad mentions the newspaper issued in 2002, more than ten years ago. Two weeks ago, the same publication recognized Wendy Davis as “Servant of the People.” Ad Copy: “Before she cleans us all out, let’s pull the plug on Davis.” Fact Check – Broad and false Actually, Mark Shelton’s opposition to funding the women’s health program and his opposition to Texas participation in the expanded Medicare program will result in a net revenue loss for the State of Texas. It is Shelton, not Davis whose positions could figuratively “clean us all out.”

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