Dueling ads intensify CD 2 battle between Gwen Graham and NRCC

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An intense duel ensues in Florida’s 2nd Congressional District, where weapons of choice are not swords or pistols, but competitive TV ads from both Democrat Gwen Graham and the National Republican Congressional Committee.

First volley goes to the NRCC, which unleashed a new anti-Graham ad Tuesday morning featuring local surgeon Andy Borom.

“Andy” is a 30-second spot where Borom tells the camera that Graham’s support of Obamacare — with higher premiums, fewer choices, and more out-of-pocket expenses — is “just wrong.”

“Gwen Graham seems to think that we can fix Obamacare,” he says. “There is no fixing this disaster.

“If that’s what Gwen Graham thinks is the North Florida Way, she’s just wrong,” Borom adds.

“How can we trust her judgment in Congress,” asks NRCC spokesperson Katie Prill in a statement, “when she is proving to be tone-deaf to the problems affecting us all right now.”

Not content with sitting on the sidelines, Graham, the daughter of former governor and U.S. Sen. Bob Graham, fires back with her own ad — much more positive in tone — hitting CD 2 airwaves Tuesday.

“Right” focuses on Graham’s “North Florida Way,” where the Democrat from Tallahassee pushes commonsense economic policies to grow the economy in the state’s Panhandle region.

Graham’s Economic Plan includes job training investments, “Made-in-America” tax incentives and ensuring local small businesses have equal footing with big corporations.

“The North Florida Way is first just being willing to put aside differences to do the right thing,” Graham says in the 30-second spot. “For Gwen Graham, that means an economy that works for North Florida’s middle class,” the narrator adds.

Also entering the fray is the Florida Democratic Party, who issued a statement uncovering the political leanings of the “concerned” Dr. Borom, which includes nearly $70,000 in contributions to Graham’s opponent — Republican U.S. Rep. Steve Southerland — as well as a variety of Tea Party groups and Republicans.

“Clearly Congressman Southerland has been forced to depend on national Republicans to bail out his floundering campaign as his Washington Way of doing business is rejected by North Floridians, said FDP spokesperson Max Steele.

Steele noted that Graham defeated Southerland in a straw poll of the Capital Medical Society, after hearing both candidates in a candidate forum September 3. The Capital Medical Society is a Tallahassee-based professional membership representing more than 630 physicians in Leon, Gadsden, Jefferson, and Wakulla Counties.

Both Graham’s “Right” and the NRCC “Andy” ads are now available on YouTube.

NRCC’s “Andy”:

Gwen Graham’s “Right”:


Phil Ammann is a St. Petersburg-based journalist and blogger. With more than three decades of writing, editing and management experience, Phil produced material for both print and online, in addition to founding HRNewsDaily.com. His broad range includes covering news, local government and culture reviews for Patch.com, technical articles and profiles for BetterRVing Magazine and advice columns for a metaphysical website, among others. Phil has served as a contributor and production manager for SaintPetersBlog since 2013. He lives in St. Pete with his wife, visual artist Margaret Juul and can be reached at phil@floridapolitics.com and on Twitter @PhilAmmann.