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Charlotte Observer - McCrory Accepts Observer's Challenge; Dalton Ducks

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Date:
Location: Charlotte, NC

By Taylor Batten

Pat McCrory, the Republican candidate for N.C. governor, this afternoon accepted the challenge we posed in our editorial this morning: To keep his political ads fair throughout this campaign. His opponent, Democrat Walter Dalton, ducked the question.

The Observer editorial board urged McCrory and Dalton, and candidates in other races, to pledge "not to run ads that are clearly unfair (and) to denounce sleazy ads from independent groups."

This afternoon, McCrory, a Republican who is ahead in the polls, agreed and called on Dalton, a Democrat, to as well.

"This election should be about the serious issues facing our state and two competing visions for North Carolina," McCrory said. "There's enough that differentiates Lt. Governor Walter Dalton and I [sic] without having to resort to airing sleazy and unfair ads that don't tell the truth in an attempt to tear down the opponent."

Dalton spokesman Ford Porter then issued a statement that declined to take a position on the pledge.

"We're glad McCrory's got an opinion on something," Porter's statement said. "This election should be about the serious issues facing our state and two competing visions for North Carolina.Pat McCrory, the Republican candidate for N.C. governor, this afternoon accepted the challenge we posed in our editorial this morning: To keep his political ads fair throughout this campaign. His opponent, Democrat Walter Dalton, ducked the question.

The Observer editorial board urged McCrory and Dalton, and candidates in other races, to pledge "not to run ads that are clearly unfair (and) to denounce sleazy ads from independent groups."

This afternoon, McCrory, a Republican who is ahead in the polls, agreed and called on Dalton, a Democrat, to as well.

"This election should be about the serious issues facing our state and two competing visions for North Carolina," McCrory said. "There's enough that differentiates Lt. Governor Walter Dalton and I [sic] without having to resort to airing sleazy and unfair ads that don't tell the truth in an attempt to tear down the opponent."

Dalton spokesman Ford Porter then issued a statement that declined to take a position on the pledge.

"We're glad McCrory's got an opinion on something," Porter's statement said. "This election should be about the serious issues facing our state and two competing visions for North Carolina. Pat McCrory should stop talking out of both sides of his mouth and join Walter Dalton in debating the issues that matter in North Carolina: jobs and education."

UPDATE: Walton Robinson, a spokesman for the N.C. Democratic Party, issued a statement this afternoon saying McCrory had made and broken the same promise in 2008. He said McCrory "has a history of negative campaigning," but could point only to one radio ad McCrory ran late in the 2008 campaign that accused then-Lt. Gov. Bev Perdue of seeking to spend road money on a teapot museum, a charge that was not accurate.

McCrory's campaign is challenging a TV ad paid for by the Democratic Governors Association that suggests McCrory unethically tried to help a company on whose board he sat. The campaign has asked the FCC to intervene and is threatening to sue stations that continue to air it.

Shortly after that ad hit the airwaves, a Raleigh pollster, Dustin Ingalls, told a Democratic group in Fayetteville:
"To win, we have to raise a lot of money, first of all, and we have to absolutely eviscerate McCrory. There's no way to prop up Dalton enough. We have to just slash McCrory -- death by a thousand cuts." He added: "It's going to have to be a very negative campaign."

For their part, the Republican Governors Association launched the first TV ad of the campaign with a spot that makes very selective use of statistics to link Dalton to job losses, in a way that experts told WRAL was "lazy economic analysis."

That was all a bad sign to us, prompting the editorial challenging the candidates to have a little more respect for voters. Negative ads have their place; highlighting an opponent's record is fair game, and can be helpful to voters -- if it is true. But often those ads cross a line, using innuendo or lack of context or other tricks to mislead.

Where that line lies is in the eye of each viewer, of course. We're encouraged that McCrory has agreed to run a fair campaign and denounce those groups that don't, and wish Dalton would as well. Now we just hope that McCrory's idea of where to draw that line is not wildly different from where most North Carolinians would.

Read more here: http://obsdailyviews.blogspot.com/2012/05/mccrory-dalton-accept-observers.html#storylink=cpy Pat McCrory should stop talking out of both sides of his mouth and join Walter Dalton in debating the issues that matter in North Carolina: jobs and education."

UPDATE: Walton Robinson, a spokesman for the N.C. Democratic Party, issued a statement this afternoon saying McCrory had made and broken the same promise in 2008. He said McCrory "has a history of negative campaigning," but could point only to one radio ad McCrory ran late in the 2008 campaign that accused then-Lt. Gov. Bev Perdue of seeking to spend road money on a teapot museum, a charge that was not accurate.

McCrory's campaign is challenging a TV ad paid for by the Democratic Governors Association that suggests McCrory unethically tried to help a company on whose board he sat. The campaign has asked the FCC to intervene and is threatening to sue stations that continue to air it.

Shortly after that ad hit the airwaves, a Raleigh pollster, Dustin Ingalls, told a Democratic group in Fayetteville:
"To win, we have to raise a lot of money, first of all, and we have to absolutely eviscerate McCrory. There's no way to prop up Dalton enough. We have to just slash McCrory -- death by a thousand cuts." He added: "It's going to have to be a very negative campaign."

For their part, the Republican Governors Association launched the first TV ad of the campaign with a spot that makes very selective use of statistics to link Dalton to job losses, in a way that experts told WRAL was "lazy economic analysis."

That was all a bad sign to us, prompting the editorial challenging the candidates to have a little more respect for voters. Negative ads have their place; highlighting an opponent's record is fair game, and can be helpful to voters -- if it is true. But often those ads cross a line, using innuendo or lack of context or other tricks to mislead.

Where that line lies is in the eye of each viewer, of course. We're encouraged that McCrory has agreed to run a fair campaign and denounce those groups that don't, and wish Dalton would as well. Now we just hope that McCrory's idea of where to draw that line is not wildly different from where most North Carolinians would.

Read more here: http://obsdailyviews.blogspot.com/2012/05/mccrory-dalton-accept-observers.html#storylink=cpy


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