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Jane Castor ads highlight Tampa progress, Bob Buckhorn support

“The energy and excitement that binds Tampa together is electric.”

Tampa mayoral candidate Jane Castor is dropping a massive ad buy.

Starting Thursday, two 30-second spots will air on Spectrum cable and local broadcast channels throughout the city.

One ad features Castor touting Tampa’s progress. The other features incumbent Mayor Bob Buckhorn encouraging voters to choose Castor as his successor to continue progress in the city he loves.

“The energy and excitement that binds Tampa together is electric,” the ad featuring Castor begins. “We’re making all kinds of progress, but we need to make sure that everyone feels it.”

The ad is set in various scenes throughout the city including a bird’s-eye view of the downtown riverfront, the West river bank and Ybor City.

Castor’s ad highlights her commitment to better jobs, less traffic and more affordable housing. Through those, Castor says, “we can build an even safer, more vibrant city.”

“But to keep moving forward, we need a leader who is in touch with our neighborhoods and has a record of getting things done,” she continues.

The other ad features Buckhorn, who shares similar sentiments and draws on the current mayor’s own passion for the city.

“We live in a vibrant and safe city that’s on the verge of something really special, and now is no time to slow it down,” Buckhorn says.

He continues that Castor is the right candidate to “get the job done and take our city to the next level.”

“She’ll be a mayor who brings all of Tampa together to grow jobs, fix traffic congestion and keep our neighborhoods safe.”

The ad ends with Buckhorn saying Castor is the right pick to write Tampa’s next “best chapter.”

The ads come just one day after Buckhorn officially endorsed Castor, though he’s been expected to do so since before she even announced she was running. It’s also clear from the ad’s timing that Buckhorn had made up his mind before going public. The video would have begun production long before he announced his endorsement.”

The two ads also reaffirm Castor’s commitment to running a clean campaign against her opponent, philanthropist David Straz. Castor said she would protect her reputation against attacks, but would keep her own campaign tactics focused on vision and experience.

Straz refused to make that same promise saying during a news conference one day after the election that put the two candidates into a runoff that “it’s a free country” and that as long as negative ads were truthful, they were fair game.

Straz has already employed two points in negative ads targeting Castor including one criticizing her support for red light cameras and another blasting the former Tampa Police Chief for the agency’s ticketing policy against minor biking infractions a Tampa Bay Times report found to disproportionately target African-American cyclists in poor communities.

The runoff election is April 23.

Janelle Irwin Taylor has been a professional journalist covering local news and politics in Tampa Bay since 2003. Most recently, Janelle reported for the Tampa Bay Business Journal. She formerly served as senior reporter for WMNF News. Janelle has a lust for politics and policy. When she’s not bringing you the day’s news, you might find Janelle enjoying nature with her husband, children and two dogs. You can reach Janelle at Janelle@floridapolitics.com.

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