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Ausley debuts new ad

by John Lantigua | October 13th, 2010

Democratic candidate for chief financial officer Loranne Ausley introduced a new television ad Tuesday that rips her opponent, Republican Jeff Atwater, for what it calls “pay to play contracts” issued under his watch as Senate president.

The ad depicts an actor playing Atwater in the office of the Senate president welcoming a series of visitors who each hand him an envelope and shake hands enthusiastically. A voice over enumerates instances of what the Ausley campaign considers questionable spending decisions in which Atwater participated.

Those instances include $48 million spent on a new 1st District Court of Appeals courthouse in Tallahassee, which has been attacked for its luxurious details and is derisively called “the Taj Mahal.”


Despite the scene depicted in the ad, the bond for the project was voted on by the Senate in 2007, before Atwater was Senate president. A recent audit ordered by current CFO Alex Sink blamed the exhorbitant price of the building  on lack of control by the Department of Management Services and the judges themselves who requested the lavish construction details.
Other  expenditures attacked by Ausley include $110 million for a private prison and $100,000 for a golf museum .
“It’s time to clean up Tallahassee,” Ausley says in the ad as supporters are seen in the background holding mops.
“It looks like we’re going to need more mops,” she says in closing.

 Brian Hughes, spokesperson for Atwater, said Ausley had her facts wrong in the ad. He said Atwater was not Senate president when either the courthouse or prison appropriations were passed.

 “And creating a visual that implies that a crime was committed, that someone shoved wads of cash into a jacket pocket, is despicable,”Hughes said. “It shows you how desperate they are.”

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5 Responses to “Ausley debuts new ad”

  1. bbc Says:

    Come on, you can do better than that, you have Kevn Cate after all. Oh I forgot, he does not tell lies like Kayra does. Kevin has his own rules and they are not the rules of lyng polticians.

  2. Jason Says:

    Whatever the audit says, it is the legislature that appropriaated all of the funds, and Atwater did vote for each appropriation.

  3. Mike Says:

    Good point Jason. Ausley also voted for all but one of the appropriations. The point is that the ad is misleading at best and really just plain false. It is telling that she can’t pick from his true record and find things to attack. If she has to make up lies, then it is a clear sign of desperation. Not to mention the whole “Taj Mahal” issue reflects most poorly on Sink, the overseer of the state funds. Personally, I don’t hold it against Sink, but the ads sure aren’t helping her in her race for Gov.

  4. tom Says:

    The fact that the Post is defending Atwater on this is telling. I don’t remember ever reading a positive story by them about him.

  5. mike Says:

    ausley just lost my vote.

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