NRCC buys three weeks of ads to criticize Ben Chandler on the economy

06/23/2011 03:39 PM

UPDATED: The National Republican Congressional Committee has bought ad time over the next three weeks in Central Kentucky to air a commercial hammering Democratic U.S. Rep. Ben Chandler on economic issues and linking him to President Barack Obama.

The ad — which comes nearly 17 months from the next congressional election — starts with Chandler remarks from 2008 endorsing Obama.

“Barack Obama, I know, will provide the steady hand and leadership we need to move us forward,” Chandler is seen saying.

The spot, called “Chandler making it worse,” then lists economic statistics, such as Kentucky’s unemployment rate of 9.8% and more than 206,000 out-of-work Kentuckians.

“Barack Obama. Ben Chandler. They’re making the economy worse,” the ad’s announcer says.

Here’s the NRCC’s ad:

Chandler’s spokeswoman Jennifer Krimm responded with a statement that alludes to the U.S. House Republicans’ plan to revamp Medicare into a voucher-type program and Medicaid into a block grant program.

“We are not surprised that the battle for the future of Medicare and Medicaid has started early, and we expect this battle to be long and hard over the next 17 months,” Krimm said in the statement. “As Congressman Chandler has in the past, he will continue to fight to preserve Medicare and Medicaid, instead of kicking our seniors out on the private market with a discount coupon and a get well card like the Republican budget proposes.”

The NRCC is bought nearly $20,000 in ad time in the Lexington cable market from Monday through July 17, according to public ad files at Insight Communications. Insight is the parent company of cn|2.

The committee has targeted a number of incumbent Democrats who faced tough elections in 2010. Chandler barely held off Republican Andy Barr, a Lexington lawyer, by 648 votes last fall.

Earlier this month, Barr announced he would run for a second chance at Chandler next year.

Chandler has voted with some of the Obama administration priorities, including the nearly $800 million federal stimulus bill in 2009.

But he has voted against other proposals, most notably the health care reform bill in 2010 and a financial regulatory bill last year.

- Ryan Alessi


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