Charlie Crist finally asks DCCC to kill that fake David Jolly/Donald Trump ad
ST. PETERSBURG — Charlie Crist says he had a change of heart on a misleading political ad that has emerged as the focal point of a nationally scrutinized congressional race.
On Monday, a Tampa Bay Times editorial criticized the former governor about a Democratic Congressional Campaign Committee ad that portrayed U.S. Rep David Jolly, Crist’s Republican opponent in the 13th Congressional District race, as a pal of Donald Trump.
That editorial was posted online on Friday afternoon.
Jolly, though, has never met Trump and has said he won't vote for the GOP candidate for president.
After reading the editorial, Crist said, he called the DCCC and asked them to take down the ad.
Crist said the DCCC later took down the ad.
“I wish I’d done it sooner,” Crist said. “I was moved.”
Jolly, the Republican incumbent, wasn’t in a forgiving mood. The ad has run for two weeks, typically the lifetime of a political ad. The Jolly campaign pointed to information on the Federal Communications Commission website that appears to indicate the ad was only supposed to run through today.
“I’ll be blunt: Charlie is a liar, Always has been,” Jolly said. “Charlie’s opportunity to be moved was two weeks ago when he was confronted at Eckerd College about the ad and he claimed the First Amendment.”
The ad has become a central jousting point of the campaign as the Jolly pointed to it as evidence of Crist’s untrustworthiness while Democrats, as they have in races around the country, have sought to tie Jolly to the controversial Republican nominee.
Jolly has pointed out that Crist has a long relationship to Trump, including donations and outing while he has never met the New York real estate tycoon.
On Monday, Jolly went further.
“Charlie Crist is the Donald Trump of the left,” he said. “He’ll say anything until he gets caught.”
Crist said the newspaper editorial put the ad in a new light for him and he realizes now that it shouldn't have run.
“It’s wrong,” he said.