Updated: 10:28 a.m. | Republican Jesse Kelly’s latest TV ad in the hotly-contested Arizona special election to replace former Rep. Gabrielle Giffords (D) hits on a familiar issue from the 2010 elections: Cap-and-trade legislation. The ad criticizes Ron Barber, the Democratic nominee and a former Giffords aide, for supporting the 2009 bill aimed at reducing carbon emissions.
“Arizona families can’t afford Ron Barber,” a narrator says in the 30-second spot.
The ad is part of approximately $257,000 the campaign has spent on ads and future reservations through May 21, according to GOP sources.
Television spending in the special election in this swing district has been intense — the campaigns and the outside groups supporting them have spent about a million dollars on each side. It is a huge sum for the inexpensive Tucson, Ariz., media market.
The special election is June 12. Giffords, who was wounded in a January 2011 shooting spree in Tucson, resigned in January to focus on her recovery.
Roll Call rates this race a Tossup.
The Barber campaign issued a quick response to the advertisement.
“If Jesse Kelly thinks huge tax breaks for Big Oil are fair, maybe he’s been spending too much time in Texas,” said Barber spokeswoman Jessica Schultz. “Ron Barber is going to work to promote more domestic energy production—through oil, natural gas and alternative energies—and will work to end the huge tax breaks for big oil companies. At a time of record profits, Big Oil and Wall Street continue to increase the price of gas for middle class Arizonans—they don’t deserve to be rewarded for that.”