Sunday, October 29, 2006

Negative Ads and Integrity

In September we commented about the negative tv ads that were placed by people that hid their identities. The ads were directed at Joe Barbetta and were placed by a group of developer special interests that were identified after the election.

We have become inured to all the negative ads during the current campaign. It seems that both candidates for many positions are slinging mis-truths and half-truths around like crazy.

Another ad has appeared that is a little different.

Laura Benson has recently started running negative ads in the race for District 69 State House. Her opponent, Keith Fitzgerald, stated in a Tiger Bay forum that the ads are lies. He has pointed out that his 1996 book, apparently referred to in the ads, is a policy study that clearly says that uncontrolled immigration must be controlled or our country will face many serious difficulties. He has also pointed out that immigration policy is a federal government policy issue according to the U S Constitution, not a state policy issue.

What is disturbing is that while both Fitzgerald and Benson signed pledges with the Civic League that they would not engage in negative ads, Fitzgerald has kept his pledge, but Benson has not.

SOS does not endorse candidates. However one of our mission principles is that we "preserve, enhance and promote integrity of public management". We have difficulty with a candidate that pledges not to use negative ads then goes ahead and runs negative ads anyway.

Can an elected official maintain integrity during the term of office when they obviously show a lack of integrity while running for office?

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