Truth Test: Ad claims examined in US Senate race

Tuesday, September 21st 2004, 10:00 am
By: News On 6

The News on 6 continues to examine the advertisements in the US senate race. The News on 6 puts a new Brad Carson ad to the Truth Test - that directly contradicts an ad for his opponent, Tom Coburn.

News on 6 reporter Emory Bryan explains.

The Brad Carson campaign gets some points for creativity with its latest ad, which portrays Tom Coburn as a jack in the box. The ad slams Dr Tom Coburn and praises Carson. Announcer: “Tom Coburn said people in Oklahoma City are ‘crapheads.’ He said seniors go to the doctor because they're ‘lonely.’ And that voting for farmers made him ‘physically sick.’“ All of those quotes are accurate, but so brief they don't tell the whole story. Coburn did make the "crapheads" statement; a spokesman clarifies it to mean only the state legislature.

On the sick comment - Coburn did say voting for some farm subsidies made him feel sick. At the same time he's voted for other subsidies in the farm bill. It obviously wasn't literally a vote for farmers as stated in the ad.

Announcer: "He voted against taxpayer funded abortions every time." In this line - Carson denies he's ever voted for taxpayer funded abortions. Coburn's ad says exactly the opposite. Which is true? Both sides stick by their claims.

In 2001, Carson voted against an amendment to prohibit the use of tax money for overseas abortions. Coburn and some right to life groups believe that's a vote for taxpayer funded abortions. Carson also voted to allow abortions on overseas military bases - as long as the patient pays for the procedure. Coburn's campaign says taxpayers would indirectly pay for the procedure because the military would have to hire doctors and build clinics just for abortions.

Announcer: "President Bush praised Brad for supporting his tax cuts." That one is much easier. Carson voted for part of the Bush tax cuts, but not all of them. It's one more reason Brad Carson’s campaign gives for describing him as a conservative Democrat - when the Coburn campaign paints Carson as a far left liberal.

Brad Carson confirmed again Tuesday, he is pro-choice, but repeated that he's against any taxpayer funds being used for abortions - anywhere, including military bases. He confirmed his vote to allow abortions on military bases, but said no tax money was needed to support that policy.