The Florida Democratic Party’s receipt of federal coronavirus crisis bailout money remains front and center in the race for Senate District 9, one of two districts Democrats are betting on for flip in November.
The race pits Republican former Rep. Jason Brodeur against Longwood Democrat Patricia Sigman, a labor and employment lawyer.
After the General Election matchup was set, Brodeur and political committees linked to the Republican Party have hit Sigman over the FDP loan scandal, claiming that “money meant to save jobs is pouring down on Patricia Sigman’s campaign” and asking her to return it.
Sigman’s campaign and Senate Victory, FDP’s state Senate campaign arm, have downplayed the attack.
“These are just more desperate lies from Tallahassee Republicans because they know that voters will reject Jason Brodeur’s extreme record,” Anders Croy, a spokesman for Senate Victory, told the Orlando Sentinel last week.
The crux of FDP’s dismissal is Sigman’s campaign ledger, which doesn’t show any deposits coming directly from the party.
Though technically accurate, money has intermingled higher up the chain — FDP frequently sends cash to the Florida Democratic Legislative Campaign Committee, the main committee Democrats’ use to fund state Senate campaigns. In turn, FDLCC has delivered tens of thousands worth of in-kind support to Sigman’s campaign, paying for polling, research and staff.
But Brodeur’s campaign and the Republicans’ state Senate campaign arm aren’t letting up, they’re doubling down in a new TV ad set to start airing in the Central Florida district this week.
The 30-second spot, paid for by the Florida Republican Senatorial Campaign Committee, pokes at Sigman’s own TV ad.
In Sigman’s ad, released last week, she touts her legal career fighting for the “mistreated” and says she’s running for Senate because “corrupt politicians are mistreating us all.”
The FRSCC ad borrows the first few seconds of Sigman’s commercial before flipping it on its face, saying the Central Florida residents she says she’s fighting for “all suffered when Patricia Sigman’s campaign took money funneled from the Paycheck Protection Program.”
It continues, “Taxpayer dollars flowed to Sigman’s campaign instead of Americans in need. Instead of talking about corrupt politicians, Patricia Sigman should stop being one. Return our money.”