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PAC ads attack Diego Morales and Steve Braun

Negative campaigning is heating up ahead of the May primary. From negative commercials, radio ads and fliers in mailboxes, two district four congressional candidates seem to be the targets.

Posted: Apr. 20, 2018 6:16 PM
Updated: Apr. 20, 2018 6:32 PM

TIPPECANOE COUNTY, Ind. (WLFI) - Negative campaigning is heating up ahead of the May primary. From negative commercials, radio ads and fliers in mailboxes, two District 4 Congressional candidates seem to be the targets.

Paid political ads targeting District 4 Congressional Candidate Diego Morales have been flooding mailboxes, all targeted to get a specific reaction.

They're created by Super PACS. Super PACs is a political action committee where money flows freely.

"PACs bundle money from different contributors and under campaign finance law, they can distribute. It's got to be legally recorded and so on," said Purdue Political Scientist Jay McCann.

The Super PAC, Citizens for a Strong America, has funneled more than $57,000 into two anti-Morales ads. One of the ads which reads, “Diego Morales, you're fired" also says Morales was fired from one job for being inefficient and lacking focus.

"When it comes to working at the Secretary of State's Office, I'm very proud of all the work I did there," said Morales. "I gave everything I had and when it was time for me to go, I left, I followed the rules and I put in my two weeks' notice and then I left. After that, I have no control on what people do."

So far, they've only been mailed out to voters in District four.

"This is fake news. It's clearly generated by one of my competitors because I have outworked him on the field and outraised him when he comes to fundraisers," said Morales.

Morales isn't the only one who has been targeted. Candidate Steve Braun, who is also running for the District 4 Congressional seat, has also been under fire. The PAC called, With Honor Fund, has spent more than $260,000.

Both PACs have also poured thousands of dollars into the Republican Congressional races in Texas. So why would the PACs have interest in both Indiana and Texas?

"They're going to target the district here," said McCann. "This Congressional seat is sort of designed to lean towards Republicans and that's why it's widely contested. And a PAC like this is saying, well that's some pretty nice real estate."

However, not everyone is fooled by what's landing in their mail.

"Nowadays anything pertaining to politics. Before I believe it as fact, I look at it. Where it came from, what's it about," said Ernest Wooley.

News 18 received this statement from Steve Braun's office in response to the PAC ads.

"Those claims are campaign garbage the voters see through. Steve Braun is the conservative leader they can trust to go to Congress and defend their values like protecting the right to life, defending our second amendment rights, and securing the border by building the wall," said Braun.

There are five other candidates in the Republican fourth District Congressional primary. So far, none of them appear to be targeted in this way.

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