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AdWatch: How involved was Terry McAuliffe with transportation negotiations?

By Chris Hurst
Published On: Jun 05 2013 07:41:21 PM EDT
Updated On: Jun 05 2013 10:53:19 PM EDT
AdWatch: How involved was Terry McAuliffe with transportation negotiations?
ROANOKE, Va. -

WDBJ7 is continuing our AdWatch series with a new focus on the Virginia race for governor.

For the rest of Campaign 2013, we'll take a close look at political ads from the candidates and outside groups that will try to sway your vote. First up is an ad from democratic candidate Terry McAuliffe.

The ad states he played a role in getting the new transportation bill passed. The question is how big of a part did he play?

The narrator says, "Terry McAuliffe thinks this is too important a time for partisan politics. McAuliffe reaches out to Democrats and urges them to support the bill, and the bill passes."

There's no question the massive, billion dollar transportation plan to improve Virginia infrastructure was controversial. No more retail gas tax, but an increased sales tax and a new fee on hybrid vehicles.

The bill passed on the last day of the legislative session back in February. In the waning days as the deadline grew near, Democrat Terry McAuliffe says he helped get it done.

Roanoke delegate Onzlee Ware was one of ten law makers to be on a special negotiating committee asked to reach a compromise on the bill.

He says McAuliffe called him a couple of times and their conversations lasted no more than a few minutes.

"He simply wanted to know how the negotiations were going and if I thought the transportation bill would pass," he says.

Republicans are fighting back at this ad, saying McAuliffe should not be taking credit for getting the plan done. Senator Walter Stosch from Henrico picked Ware and the others in the negotiating group. He released a statement saying, "His attempt at claiming credit where none is due is an example of self-puffery that frankly deserves a prompt correction."

So what can we expect for political ads going forward? WDBJ7 Political Analyst Dr. Bob Denton says there are three phases of these ads: first is the biography phase, then the issue phase that we're in now and pretty soon we'll be in the attack ad phase.

AdWatch will continue to scrutinize these ads as we get closer to Election Day.