In the race for Missouri Senate District 22, which features Democratic Representative Jeff Roorda and Republican Representative Paul Wieland, most of the negative ad heavy-hitting comes from the state parties (as in other races), so the candidates can theoretically say their hands are clean. I have to say, though, that the negative ads that support Roorda have vastly outnumbered the negative ads that support Wieland in my mailbox.
This ad from the state Democrats is especially egregious because of its audacity.
It’s audacious, because do you know how much money Roorda got from lobbyists in the same time period?
It is true that has Roorda served 8 years in the House, while Wieland served only 4 (not counting his term in 1994). But let’s look at the last 24 months, using the St. Louis Public Radio website that tracks this information (the same source that ad used). Here’s Roorda:
You can see that Roorda ranks 27th in lobbyist spending during that time. As for Wieland:
He’s only 65th. So the two candidates aren’t really even close in terms of who gets the most money from lobbyists: it’s Roorda by a mile.
Roorda likes to attack Wieland because he is supported by insurance groups (Wieland operates an insurance agency). But Roorda’s second- and third-biggest gift-givers are alcoholic beverage groups. In fact, Roorda is the #1 recipient of gifts in the legislature from Major Brands Premium Beverage Distributors and the 4th-leading recipient of money from Anheuser-Busch. Isn’t it odd for a former cop and current police union flack to be getting money from these groups when DWIs are such a big problem, and the focus of so many police checkpoints? (This is a hypothetical attack one could launch.)
So be warned, when you hear an attack from Roorda and his associates. The truth might be 180 degrees different. This is the kind of thing you would expect from a politician, not a public servant.