Nelson through an attorney is asking the stations to immediately pull an issue ad because it directs Floridians to call his office, attacks his Senate record and falsely claims “seniors will see $500 billion in Medicare cuts” because of health-care reform.
In the wake of the recent Citizens United case, in which the Supreme Court allowed unlimited and undisclosed corporate money to be spent on such ads, TV stations have a greater responsibility to protect the public from the spread of false and deceptive information, Kendall Coffey, a lawyer for Nelson wrote in a letter to the stations today.
“On behalf of our client, we respectfully insist that you take this inaccurate ad off the air immediately,” Coffey wrote. “As a media outlet, this station has a duty to protect the public from the spread of false information and deliberate deception. “
Coffey is a partner with Coffey Burlington in Miami, and a former U.S. attorney in South Florida.
Last week, the U.S. Chamber of Commerce announced an ad campaign targeting Nelson and other select elected officials. The chamber’s ad makes a claim that has been declared false by a number of widely respected media fact-checking organizations. Just last Friday, FactCheck.org, a non-partisan, non-profit consumer advocate project with the Annenberg Public Policy Center of the University of Pennsylvania, examined the ad and reported the “Chamber Continues To Mislead On Healthcare Law.” In addition, the Pulitzer Prize-winning, independent PolitiFact has reported a number of times that the claim is “false.”