WPTV pulls anti-Frankel adby Andrew Abramson | September 24th, 2012
WPTV-Channel 5 pulled this controversial anti-Lois Frankel TV ad from the air this evening after complaints from Frankel’s campaign. The helicopter ride and marble bathroom weren’t in dispute. Instead, Frankel got the ad yanked over the claim that her spending spree caused a budget deficit.
Cities are required, by state law, to balance their budget each year. While West Palm Beach faced a large deficit in Frankel’s final year in office, the city made the necessary (and required) cuts to balance the budget. By the same measure, Frankel has touted balancing the budget as one of her accomplishments. Again, balancing the budget is required by law.
WPTV station manager Lloyd Bucher said Monday that the ad is being pulled “until there are changes made to the commercial.”
“There was a claim that there was a budget deficit, and that was never corroborated,” Bucher said.
The ad was purchased by The Young Guns Action fund, a conservative Super PAC. Young Guns is paying WPTV $173,750 to run ads through the election.
Bucher said it’s common for campaigns to complain about ads, but rare for an ad to actually be pulled.
“The stations have a duty to look into supporting corroboration,” Bucher said.
Joshua Karp, a spokesman for Frankel, said in a statement, “stations have an obligation to protect the public from false, misleading and deceptive advertising, and the station here recognized that the advertisement in question was all three.”
Bucher said he expects Young Guns to release a new version of the ad.
“I’m sure they’re going to fix it and adjust it,” Bucher said.
As of now, the ad is still running on other networks and on cable.
Frankel is facing Adam Hasner in the District 22 congressional race.