FRANKFORT — Both candidates in the Sixth Congressional District went on the air Wednesday and Thursday with television ads ending what had thus far been a relatively quiet campaign largely overshadowed by the U.S. Senate race.
First-term incumbent Republican Garland “Andy” Barr aired two positive ads, the first entitled “Our Home,” which says Barr is protecting “our home and our values,” and the second featuring his wife Carol saying Barr is still the same man she married and hasn’t been changed by Congress or Washington.
Meanwhile, Democratic challenger Elisabeth Jensen is also on the air with her first television spot, “Kentucky Jobs.”
Jensen, an education advocate from Lexington and a single mother, has tailored her campaign to many of the same economic and middle-class themes that Democratic U.S. Senate candidate Alison Lundergan Grimes is using in her challenge to incumbent Republican Sen. Mitch McConnell.
Jensen has said she expects Grimes to run well in the Sixth District and hopes to capitalize on Grimes’ coattails if they materialize. In the ad, Jensen says Barr doesn’t view it as his job to create jobs in Kentucky.
The ad features a clip of Barr during a televised interview on KET saying government “cannot create jobs,” at which point Jensen comes on screen and says her job will be to create “more, better-paying jobs.”
The clip of Barr, however, cuts off before he tells host Bill Goodman that government can create an economic atmosphere conducive to job creation.
“I’ll increase job training, raise the minimum wage and fight tax breaks for big companies that ship jobs overseas,” Jensen says in her ad. “Since Andy Barr won’t do his job, I will.”
Barr’s “Our Home” ad uses several iconic Kentucky images — a coal miner, a thoroughbred colt frolicking, a basketball player — before showing Barr talking to workers on what appears to be a factory floor.
A female narrator says: “This is our home, our values and Andy Barr is protecting them.” As another image of coal miners leaving a mine appears on the screen, the narrator says, “Family — Barr has defended ours by standing up to Obama and fighting for jobs.”
The ad concludes with images of his wife and two young daughters and the narrator saying Barr fights for “our home, our families — our Andy Barr for Congress.”
In the second Barr ad, his wife Carol says their lives “have changed a lot” since her husband was elected to Congress, but “Andy is still the same man I married six years ago,” as the camera shows a wedding picture of the couple.
She calls Barr “honest, genuine and caring,” while the ad shows Barr talking to constituents in various settings.
Then she says, that for Barr “helping people in Kentucky and taking care of our girls is just as just as important as anything he does in Washington.”
That’s clearly aimed at muting any message from Jensen which might attempt to tie Barr to the gridlock and partisanship in Washington and the historically low approval ratings for both parties in Congress.