Plain Dealer: Voter research org says Dave Joyce lied when citing them in ad attacking Betsy Rader

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
Thursday, October 25, 2018
Contact: Brexton Isaacs, Brexton@BetsyRaderForCongress.com

Plain Dealer: Voter research org says Dave Joyce lied when citing them in ad attacking Betsy Rader
Both of Joyce’s attack ads called out as lies by independent fact-checkers

Novelty, OH – On Thursday, Seth Richardson, political reporter with the Cleveland Plain Dealer, published a story on Congressman David Joyce’s latest TV ad, which has come under fire for falsely attacking Betsy Rader.

In a new ad, Joyce cites Vote Smart when he makes false claims such as “Betsy Rader supports across the board income tax hikes.” On Tuesday, Vote Smart called out Joyce in a release (read), saying “David Joyce is cheating the public out of their need for trusted, abundant, accurate information.”

Richardson’s piece points out that “This isn’t the first time Joyce’s ads have received criticism for being inaccurate. Joyce previously ran an ad claiming Rader wanted “a government takeover of health care” – the Republican criticism of the Medicare-for-all plan proposed by some Democrats. Rader does not support a universal Medicare plan. The Akron Beacon Journal editorial board deemed Joyce’s Medicare commercial a lie.”

Cleveland Plain Dealer: Voter research org says Dave Joyce lied when citing them in ad attacking Betsy Rader

October 25, 2018

Vote Smart, a nonpartisan political research center, said Republican U.S. Rep. Dave Joyce lied in his latest campaign commercial attacking his opponent and tried to cite the organization to give the shot credibility.

Joyce, who is in a competitive race in Ohio’s 14th Congressional District in Northeast Ohio against Democrat Betsy Rader, is on the air with an attack ad saying Rader promised to vote for tax increases across the board, citing Vote Smart as the organization making the claim.

But a letter from the organization’s board of directors said Joyce’s commercial contains information he “knows to be false” and impugns the congressman for using Vote Smart to give the claim the appearance of credibility.

“This kind of negative campaign activity deliberately deceives voters and is precisely the sort of tactic that Vote Smart attempts to counter with its factual database,” the letter reads. “By using Vote Smart’s name to give credibility to these attacks, David Joyce is cheating the public out of their need for trusted, abundant, accurate information.”

Vote Smart Dave Joyce letter

Joyce’s campaign disputed Vote Smart’s characterization of the commercial as false, with spokesman Dino DiSanto saying they were as plain as possible with Rader’s position.

Vote Smart was founded in 1992 as a nonpartisan political research firm. Its founders include former Presidents Gerald Ford and Jimmy Carter. The website compiles information for voters on candidates, including past votes and the Political Courage Test, which surveys candidates on their positions on contentious issues they are likely to face.

Rader took the Political Courage Test, in which she answered “yes” on if she supported an income tax increase on any tax bracket to balance the budget.

Joyce’s commercial claims Rader supports a tax increase on middle-income families, a tax hike on everyone and that she was pledging to vote for high taxes.

Peter McLaughlin, Vote Smart director of elections and candidate research, said Joyce – who did not take the survey – was making false claims against Rader that were not included in the survey. There was no question about increasing taxes on the middle class or on everybody and the survey did not include a pledge to do so of any kind, he said.

“The attack ad makes a few quotes that are just not what is on our site and it is not what our data says. That’s why we felt the need to put out this statement,” McLaughlin said. “The attack ad in this case is a misuse of our data.”

McLaughlin said this kind of issue involving Vote Smart’s information happens in less than 0.05 percent of races nationwide.

DiSanto said they did not misconstrue what Rader said.

“She publicly calls for a tax increase,” DiSanto said. “This letter is basically saying we’re not allowed to tell anyone. Sorry, that’s just not the way it works. It just sounds like they’re trying to cover up that she calls for a tax increase. She answers the question plain and simple. She answered it and they’re upset now because we’re telling people. It doesn’t make any sense.”

Brexton Isaacs, Rader’s campaign manager, said Rader had no plans for a tax increase, but “believes that the wealthiest should pay their fair share.” He said Joyce’s ad was dirty politics.

“Congressman Joyce doesn’t respect voters enough to have an honest dialogue about the issues impacting folks and has repeatedly made false claims in order to get re-elected,” Isaacs said.

This isn’t the first time Joyce’s ads have received criticism for being inaccurate. Joyce previously ran an ad claiming Rader wanted “a government takeover of health care” – the Republican criticism of the Medicare-for-all plan proposed by some Democrats. Rader does not support a universal Medicare plan.

The Akron Beacon Journal editorial board deemed Joyce’s Medicare commercial a lie.