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David Jolly campaign reacts to ad that depicts him as ‘out of touch’ on a woman’s right to choose

A new ad produced by the House Majority PAC features several Pinellas County women describing Congressman David Jolly as “dangerous,” “backwards,” and “out of touch” when it comes to a woman’s right to choose. But the Jolly camp responded by finding a 10-year-old newspaper story where Charlie Crist is quoted as saying that he would support a harsh anti-abortion bill.

The ad, entitled, “One Word” focuses on Jolly’s pro-life stance in Congress, and equates it with Donald Trump’s stance on the issue.

“From opposing a woman’s right to choose to denying women basic health care, David Jolly and Donald Trump both represent a big step backwards for Pinellas County and the country,” said House Majority PAC Executive Director Alixandria Lapp.  “Their shared agenda clearly is dangerous, backwards, and out of touch. By every measure, David Jolly is just not for women in FL-13.”

Jolly has voted twice for a ban on abortions after 20 weeks, as well introducing legislation to defund Planned Parenthood.

The House Majority PAC aims to get as many Democrats elected as possible to Congress. They have previously announced that they intend to spend more than $1.4 million in the CD 13 race to help get Crist elected.

“We knew it was coming,” responds Jolly campaign spokesman Max Goodman in an email to supporters, referring to the third-party attack. In his response, Goodman also includes a 2006 article written by the Associated Press that says that if elected Governor, Crist says he would sign a harsh abortion bill similar to one that had recently been enacted in South Carolina.

When asked by a Roman Catholic Priest whether he would sign a bill like South Dakota’s abortion ban, which only allows the procedure to save a woman’s life, Crist quickly answered “Yes I would.”He later clarified that the South Dakota law, set to go into effect July 1, is too restrictive, and he would only sign a ban if it also allowed abortions for victims of rape and incest. Crist added, “Promoting a culture of life is preferable to me than passing laws.”

“The beautiful irony of these attacks, and why they’ll undoubtedly backfire, is that Mr. Crist is the candidate in this race who actually personifies Washington’s ‘war on women’ mantra,” said Goodman. He also includes a sound link of Crist boasting of his pro-life record when running for governor.

The Crist campaign reacted to the Jolly campaign’s statement.

“Rep. Jolly may believe he has to attack Governor Crist with Trump-like insults to win, but it will backfire for him, like it did after their debate,” said spokesman Kevin Cate. “Governor Crist has been personally pro-life, but believes in protecting a woman’s right to choose. That’s why as Governor he vetoed invasive ultrasound legislation, and as State Senator he stopped an unnecessary 24-hour waiting period. Crist’s record stands in stark contrast with Jolly’s extreme agenda, in which he’s voted against women’s personal health choices at every opportunity.”

While running for Governor in 2014, Crist said that he hadn’t changed his view on abortion restrictions. PolitiFact called the claim “Mostly False,” writing that “Crist has always been all over the map on abortion.”

“One Word” begins airing today on broadcast and cable TV in the Tampa Bay media market as well as digital platforms.

Written By

Mitch Perry has been a reporter with Extensive Enterprises since November of 2014. Previously, he served five years as political editor of the alternative newsweekly Creative Loafing. Mitch also was assistant news director with WMNF 88.5 FM in Tampa from 2000-2009, and currently hosts MidPoint, a weekly talk show, on WMNF on Thursday afternoons. He began his reporting career at KPFA radio in Berkeley and is a San Francisco native who has lived in Tampa since 2000. Mitch can be reached at mitch.perry@floridapolitics.com.

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