Mayoral Campaign Ads Under the Spotlight
With election day just over a week away, campaign ads are flying fast and furious. Here's a closer look at some of them.
"An ad that says that crime is under control," said Kathy Taylor, challenging a Bartlett ad.
"Safe, adding back police officers," says the Bartlett ad.
"Part one crimes are actually down," said Bartlett campaign manager Dan Patten.
Which is technically true. Part One Crimes, which is the name of a category, includes Aggravated Assault, Auto Theft, Burglary, Homicide, Rape and Robbery. And when added up all together, there's a 1.9% Decrease from 2012. But, when taken alone, Homicides are actually up over last year, with 55 so far this year, compared to 46 for all of 2012.
As for a Taylor ad on crime? "The most egregious is definitely her most recent mailer," said Patten.
On one side of the Taylor ad, headlines of criminal activity that have been taking place in the city. On the other side, pictures of the mayor playing the harmonica, with text up above that reads "Crime has spiked this year. What's the mayor been doing?" An interesting flyer because this leads the viewer to perhaps infer that if the mayor hadn't been playing the harmonica, he could have been doing something at that time to do something about crime.
"That blew my mind, I've been in politics for a while and I've never seen anything quite make that comparison," said Patten.
Now on to the state of the city's finances.
"Today Tulsa is stable," says one Bartlett ad. "Financial stability," says another.
"He's running ads that say we're financially stable when he's reporting in fact that we're in the red," said Taylor.
And in fact, as of the end of October, the city is roughly $3.5 million in the red.
Another topic that's raised some red flags? The Tulsa police department.
"Dewey Bartlett fired 124 police officers," says a Taylor ad.
"What she fails to mention is that Bartlett hired back all those police officers except one that had chose to leave Tulsa," said Patten.
That's essentially true, all but a few eventually came back to the Tulsa police department. And while we're on the topic of jobs, let's talk about quitting.
"Then Kathy quit," says a Bartlett ad.
Did she actually quit? Well, no, she just didn't run for re-election. But she did finish her term.
"I did not quit. I never quit, and mayor Bartlett knows that, so it's completely untrue," said Taylor.
And so, on goes the back and forth battle of he said/she said, that do doubt will last right up until election day.