Roberts Airing TV, Radio Ads To Introduce Himself To NET Voters
By Hank Hayes - Kingsport Times-News
GOP congressional candidate Richard Roberts of Greeneville is putting part of his personal wealth
into a $150,000 television and radio ad campaign introducing himself to Northeast Tennessee voters over the next four weeks, according to announcements released by his campaign Tuesday.
"The (TV and radio) campaign is extensive," said Roberts, who is the first to air television ads in the
congressional primary race. Roberts' ads focus on his support of President George W. Bush's efforts in the war on terrorism and particularly in the Iraq War - despite Bush's low job approval ratings.
"The president understands what is at stake in this war, even if the national news media seem to have forgotten what we are fighting for," Roberts said in a prepared news release. "This fight is nothing less than a fight for the survival of our Christian way of life in face of a determined, radical enemy who seeks to destroy western civilization.
"And we are winning that war. Just this week there was a major break through when the first democratically elected government in Iraqi history announced it had formed a government and cabinet.
Since the New York Times and the big TV news networks don't seem to want to give the president
favorable coverage on this and other positive developments, I felt that my first broadcast message to
the voters should reflect my strong support for the president...I am proud to stand with President Bush, and I am willing to say so in public at a time when some Republicans are trying to distance themselves from him."
Nine of Bush's top 13 counties in the 2004 presidential election were all or partly in the 1st congressional District, according to Congressional Quarterly's Politics in America.
Roberts, 52, an attorney who served as a senior executive at Greeneville-based Landair Inc., is one of 12 Republicans seeking the GOP nomination in the 1st Congressional District, where U.S. Rep. William L. "Bill" Jenkins is retiring. Other major GOP candidates in the primary race include state Rep. David Davis, Sullivan County Mayor Richard Venable, former Johnson City Mayor Vance Cheek Jr. and
current Johnson City Vice Mayor Phil Roe. Democrats haven't held the seat in more than 100 years.
Roberts also announced that he has signed the "No New Taxes" pledge offered by the Washington, D.C., anti-tax group Americans for Tax Reform.
"Bill Jenkins and other conservative members of Congress from Tennessee are past signers of the pledge, so I feel I am in good company," said Roberts. "The problem with the federal government is not that taxes are too low, it's that government spending is far too high.
"Too many members of Congress lack the ability to control their pork-barrel spending and, I regret to say, that includes some of my fellow Republicans."