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From the staff of the Tampa Bay Times

Steve Southerland cites vote with Pelosi, then uses her as liberal demon to attack rival



Rep. Steve Southerland, R-Panama City, has this new ad today that demonizes Nancy Pelosi in an attack on Democratic challenger Al Lawson. Pretty standard (circa 2010). But Southerland's also linked himself to the California liberal as he stresses bi-partisanship to voters in Florida's 2nd Congressional district.

"Probably the most visible time that I got in the speaker's dog house was when I voted the same with Nancy Pelosi," Southerland said in a recent interview with WFSU in Tallahassee.

UPDATE: A Southerland spokesman said he was in no way implying he agrees with Pelosi and stressed that Southerland's comments came in the context of rejecting a House budget plan and he was talking about bucking his party. 

"Just because Steve Southerland ended up in the same vote column as Nancy Pelosi on the debt limit deal doesn't mean they are working together," spokesman Matt McCullough, said. "In fact, most people would call that leadership when you're willing to take a stand against your own party. Al Lawson, on the other hand, couldn't name one policy difference he has with Barack Obama and his campaign ads are funded by $1 million in Pelosi-backed DC money. I wonder how often he'd vote with Pelosi?"

Appealing to bipartisanship is a common thread in tight House races this year (story here) but Republicans are wagering Pelosi is disliked enough to turn votes. Rep. Vern Buchanan, R-Sarasota, has also used Pelosi in an attack ad against Democrat Keith Fitzgerald.

[Last modified: Thursday, October 25, 2012 7:53pm]


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