A referendum that you won’t find on the ballot

Frishe, 63, is a veteran legislator who served six years in the state House in the 1980s, returning to the chamber again in 2006, where he has served since.

Not having his own family money to pump into his campaign, Frishe is being severely outspent by Brandes, who is saturating local TV with well-produced ads, and mailboxes full of slick mailers. Those ads use a tactic out of the tea party playbook — paint your opponent as a career politician and portray yourself as a knight in shining armor who is an agent of change.

By Chris Ingram

The Tampa Tribune

Published Saturday, August 11, 2012

Among local contested Republican primaries, one stands out as having a significant impact on the Tampa area. State Senate District 22 pits Jeff Brandes against Jim Frishe; both candidates are sitting members of the state House.

Both legislators are in the real estate business, and both are conservatives, but their similarities stop there.

At just 36, Brandes is a relative newcomer to politics. He’s been in the Legislature just one term and is likely still trying to figure out the maze of hallways in the capitol building. He was an Army Reserve officer who saw duty in Iraq. Family wealth has allowed him to pump over a half-million dollars into his campaign coffers.

Frishe, 63, is a veteran legislator who served six years in the state House in the 1980s, returning to the chamber again in 2006, where he has served since.

Not having his own family money to pump into his campaign, Frishe is being severely outspent by Brandes, who is saturating local TV with well-produced ads, and mailboxes full of slick mailers. Those ads use a tactic out of the tea party playbook — paint your opponent as a career politician and portray yourself as a knight in shining armor who is an agent of change.

That kind of ad, repeated over and over again, works — whether true or not.

More important than recognizing that the ads are misleading is (click here to read the full column in the Tampa Tribune).

Chris Ingram is the president and founder of 411 Communications a corporate and political communications firm, and publisher of Irreverent View. Ingram is a frequent pundit on Fox News and CNN, and has written opinion columns for the Washington Times, UPI, and National Review online. He is the Republican political analyst for Bay News 9, the only 24 hour all news channel in Florida’s largest media market. The opinions expressed here are those of author and do not represent the views of Bay News 9. E-mail him at: Chris@IrreverentView.com.

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