Dan Roberti, one of the three Democrats vying for the 5th Congressional District seat, will release his second advertisement Friday that depicts both of his Democratic opponents as corrupt politicians with fake smoke coming out of their brief cases.
The 30-second spot shows an actor playing House Speaker Chris Donovan knocking on a door in a back alley somewhere and accepting an envelop from a fight promoter.
“House Speaker Chris Donovan took money from a fight promoter then green lighted ultimate fighting,“ the narrator says.
It then shows a man getting out of a tanning bed and says Donovan, “Took money from tanning bed operators, then killed a bill that protected kids from skin cancer.”
The ad cites this Register Citizen article which says that “Any suggestion that Donovan could have influenced the progress or stalling of any of these bills probably ascribes too much power to the House speaker.”
However, the ad seems to use it as a transition to the federal investigation.
“Any surprise the FBI just busted his campaign for taking $27,000 to kill a roll-your-own tobacco bill,” the narrator says as the words “Where there’s smoke…” appears on the screen.
“I’m Dan Roberti and I approve this message because this stuff’s gotta stop,” Roberti says while sitting on a bench in Bushnell Park. Roberti is reading a copy of the Courant with the headline “Donovan Aide Arrested” at the top.
But not to leave anyone out, Roberti also goes after his other Democratic opponent, former state Rep. Elizabeth Esty.
“Elizabeth Esty took money from polluters her husband regulates,” the narrator says as the ad comes to an end.
Esty is married to Department of Energy and Environmental Protection Commissioner Daniel C. Esty.
“Chris is the only candidate with a record of fighting for progressive values, Elizabeth Esty has a record of supporting different priorities, and Dan Roberti, while it’s unclear exactly what he has a record fighting for, he sure seems to like attack ads,” Gabe Rosenberg, Donovan’s spokesman, said in response to the Roberti ad.
The Roberti campaign ad comes on the heels of seven indictments made in the Donovan campaign scandal where two members of his campaign staff, and a former union official conspired to accept straw donations from roll-your-own smoke shop owners in order to defeat legislation.
The ad, Roberti’s second, stands in sharp contrast to the first television ad Donovan’s campaign is running. The Donovan ad shows him talking about his record of standing up for progressive issues and unions.
In the ad Donovan looks comfortable describing his record and talking about why he is running for Congress.
“These days some people are afraid to be called progressive and liberal,” Donovan says. “Republicans on the far right attack unions and hurt the middle class and too many politicians won’t fight back.”
“I’m proud of my record of standing up for what’s right,” Donovan says. “Leading the fight to clean up elections, making millionaires pay their fair share and working to help seniors stay in their own homes.”
Esty also has a television ad, which touts her community leadership and two years in the General Assembly.
“As a legislator she took on her party leaders to fight for honest budgets,” a narrator says in the Esty ad.
The statement didn’t sit well with the Donovan campaign who issued a comment when the ad first hit the airwaves two weeks ago.
“Esty didn’t take on party leaders, she took on the values of the Democratic Party with a Republican-like plan to protect millionaires on the backs of seniors and children,” Tom Swan, Donovan campaign manager, said.
Julie Sweet, Esty’s campaign manager, shot back on July 10.
“It’s unfortunate that Speaker Donovan has decided to engage in the same old attack politics with a sad attempt to distract from his own campaign’s serious troubles,” Sweet said. “Elizabeth is a proud Democrat and believes we should stop the political bickering and work together to extend middle class tax cuts, while ending tax cuts for millionaires and big oil companies.”