Whoa: NYC Mayor Michael Bloomberg’s committee targets Fla. congressman Dan Webster with $1.1 mil ad blitz

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What the heck did Florida congressman Dan Webster do to piss off New York City Mayor Michael Bloomberg?

That’s what Webster’s campaign must be asking itself after Bloomberg’s political action committee Independence USA launced a $1.1 million ad blitz against Webster and on behalf of Democrat Val Demings, a former Orlando police chief who has sided with Bloomberg on gun control issues.

The Orlando Sentinel reports that officials with Independence USA could not be reached for comment. But Demings’ support for some measure of gun control could be a factor in why Bloomberg’s committee is coming to the aid of Demings.

Though she’s a former police chief who carries a 9mm handgun, Demings received an “F” rating from the National Rifle Association for supporting gun control laws such as tougher background checks for those not allowed to buy guns, including felons and the mentally ill.

Bloomberg, in his third term as mayor, is a vocal champion for gun control and co-chairs the group Mayors Against Illegal Guns. A Webster spokeswoman focused on that angle in the campaign’s response to the Bloomberg ad buy.

“Nearly every liberal special interest group has attacked Dan Webster this cycle — Planned Parenthood, organized labor, EMILY’s list, and now Michael Bloomberg’s anti-gun PAC,” said spokeswoman Katie Patchett. “Clearly Bloomberg, who only supports candidates aligned with his anti-gun agenda, believes $1.1 million is the going rate for a Congressional seat.”

Peter Schorsch is the President of Extensive Enterprises and is the publisher of some of Florida’s most influential new media websites, including SaintPetersBlog.com, FloridaPolitics.com, ContextFlorida.com, and Sunburn, the morning read of what’s hot in Florida politics. SaintPetersBlog has for three years running been ranked by the Washington Post as the best state-based blog in Florida. In addition to his publishing efforts, Peter is a political consultant to several of the state’s largest governmental affairs and public relations firms. Peter lives in St. Petersburg with his wife, Michelle, and their daughter, Ella.