Some radio stations pull anti-Tipton ad

Several radio stations in Colorado’s 3rd Congressional District rejected an attack ad from Democrats aimed at Republican U.S. Rep. Scott Tipton because the ad contained a false statement.

Colorado Republican Party officials challenged the ad by the House Majority PAC, which took aim at eight GOP representatives, including Tipton, with radio-ad purchases in their districts.

A House Majority PAC spokesman said it stood by the ad and said Republicans claimed to have had the ad withdrawn only after it had completed its run through Thursday.

In the case of the ad buy in Grand Junction, radio stations KNZZ-AM and KMOZ-FM, rejected the ad, which said Tipton, a first-term congressman, had hired his nephew’s company for Tipton’s congressional office.

Tipton had contracted with a company that uses technology licensed from a company owned by Tipton’s nephew, which radio station General Manager Dave Beck said, “Certainly didn’t seem to be consistent with the impression (the ad) was trying to leave.”

There was no question the PAC “was putting out false information,” Colorado GOP attorney John Zakhem said, noting it remains a crime in Colorado to knowingly make a false statement about political candidates. It’s difficult, however, to prove defamation in the political arena, Zakhem said.

“Once again, Scott Tipton is misleading voters, because he’s fearful of his constituents learning the truth about his use of taxpayer dollars to benefit his nephew’s company,” Ryan Rudominer of the PAC said.

Most of the 3rd Congressional District stations ran the ads as scheduled, Rudominer said, but KNZZ and KMOZ, which he described as “right wing,” stopped running the ads a day early.

KNZZ airs conservative and libertarian talk shows such as those of Rush Limbaugh, Sean Hannity and Neal Boortz.

Beck said he consulted with attorneys and examined the ad’s justification provided by the political-action committee before rejecting it.

Not only was the assertion about Tipton’s relationship with his nephew’s business erroneous, but criticism that Tipton supported the budget plan crafted by House Budget Committee Chairman Paul Ryan was “a stretch,” Beck said. The allegation that Tipton wanted the elderly to pay $6,400 more per year for Medicare was “not even true,” Beck said.

Despite a loss of revenue, Beck said he rejected the ad “to be fair to the candidates and to be fair to the marketplace.”

Beck said the ad probably is only the beginning of “what I am concerned will be the most contentious political season since I’ve been alive.”

The ad ran on Clear Channel stations in Grand Junction.


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