The Senate Majority PAC which is funded by out-of-state billionaires, such as former New York City Mayor Michael Bloomberg is running an ad in Louisiana hitting Rep. Bill Cassidy (R-La.) for his association with the Koch Brothers. Washington Post Fact Checker Glenn Kessler argues that "individual lines [of the ad] may be true, but the net effect is highly misleading. Surely, the standards for political advertising in Louisiana need to be higher if residents are going to have a civil political debate."
Kessler points out that the ad reports the AFP, which is partially funded by Koch Brothers money, fought against an effort to roll back changes in a law which cut federal subsidies for flood insurance angering Louisiana residents, which is true. What it didn't mention is that the subject of the attack, Rep. Bill Cassidy, who is running for the US Senate vs. Mary Landrieu, was one of the key lawmakers who fought against AFP (and prevailed).
The fact checker continues with two more examples of misleading use of the facts, then addresses the following line in the ad: “Now they’re spending millions to buy a Senate seat for Bill Cassidy so he can fight for them.”
This is where the ad veers off the rails. Having noted that the Kochs opposed flood legislation—without mentioning that Cassidy was one of their chief opponents—Senate Majority PAC claims Cassidy would be in their pocket to do further damage to the flood victims of the state. This is nonsensical. It’s almost as if Senate Majority PAC claimed that 1 plus 1 equals 5.
If anything, Cassidy could run an ad saying that he took on the Kochs—even though they are backing him–and beat them. But the opposite can’t be true.
Television stations in Louisiana should be ashamed of falling for such an obvious gambit. Individual lines may be true, but the net effect is highly misleading. Surely, the standards for political advertising in Louisiana need to be higher if residents are going to have a civil political debate.
This is the third time in a month that the Fact Checker has given Four Pinocchios to an ad sponsored by Senate Majority PAC. That’s a pretty dreadful track record, and does little for the organization’s credibility more than six months before the midterm elections.