WAUSAU, Wis. (WSAU) – Democratic state Representative Donna Seidel has released the first television campaign ad in what will be a hotly contested Senate recall race against Republican Representative Jerry Petrowski.
The 30-second commercial features five central Wisconsin women who criticize Petrowski’s voting record in the state Assembly over the last five years.
“Jerry, we expected more from you,” a woman in the ad says as the words “Jerry Petrowski let us down” appear.
“This ad is wrong on the facts,” Petrowski said in a statement released Tuesday. He called on Seidel to withdraw the ad and asked local media outlets to not broadcast the commercial if Seidel refuses to withdraw it.
Petrowski did vote in favor of a Senate measure – approved by the governor this month – that took away the right of workers who suffer pay discrimination, including women, to sue in state court. But Petrowski’s campaign cited a PolitiFact Wisconsin report that says discriminated workers still have three legal options available to recover back wages.
The ad also accuses Petrowski of slashing funding for breast and cervical cancer screening. Petrowski voted with Assembly Republicans in favor of increasing funding by $37,500; Senate Demcrats had wanted a $62,500 increase. Petrowski ultimately voted for the Senate measure.
“Candidates usually resort to mudslinging when they can't run on their record,” said Dan Romportl, executive director of the Committee to Elect a Republican Senate. “Seidel knows she can't campaign on her record of multi-billion dollar tax increases and the rampant job loss that occurred under her watch.”
Seidel must survive a recall challenge May 8th from Antigo resident James Buckley before she can face Petrowski in a recall on June 5th.
Seidel and Petrowski are running for former Senator Pam Galloway's seat. Galloway, a Wausau Republican, resigned last month citing family health reasons. Galloway was one of four Republican state senators facing recall and the Government Accountability Board has ruled that the recall will continue without her name on the ballot.
On the Web: Donna Seidel campaign ad
Editor's note: You can also watch the video by clicking on the second thumbnail in the upper right corner of this story. The larger still image that appears should change to a YouTube player that will let you watch the video.