Most voters dislike attack ads

Published 12:00 am Tuesday, March 26, 2002

"Most voters don’t find this attractive."

That’s what a political scientist at Auburn University in Montgomery said about the attack ads Republican gubernatorial candidates Bob Riley and Steve Windom continue to volley about.

And we agree.

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The candidates have spent more time in the past two weeks arguing about the validity of poll numbers and pointing fingers than addressing the real issues. The ads in question – a television spot that accuses Riley of making thousands of dollars from investments in companies which were affected by congressional committees on which he served – were a desperate attempt on Windom’s part to divert attention from the real issues.

And they’ve worked. Riley has responded, repeatedly, in print and Windom has as well. The state GOP leaders have even stepped up to publicly chastise the pair for straying from important issues and brining what amounts to political shame on the party.

We wish the candidates would invest as much time, and energy, in discussing the issues that face Alabama – from tax reform to education funding to economic development. We’d welcome candid, passionate debate on the problems facing our state. We’d welcome the "real truth," and not just the biased version.

And we’d welcome political candidates who would rise above the fray to show real leadership during the campaign process – a leadership which we believe would carry over to the office of governor.  

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