Updated: Friday, 10 Sep 2010, 7:30 PM EDT
Published : Wednesday, 08 Sep 2010, 4:51 PM EDT
INDIANAPOLIS (WISH) - Democrat Brad Ellsworth has failed to gain traction by repeatedly questioning the lobbying background of Republican Dan Coats. Now, he has gone a step farther and says that the lobbying was "unpatriotic."
Rep. Ellsworth went to a union hall to make the case that, when Dan Coats was a lobbyist, people in his law firm worked against a bill called the Buy American Act. "I think it's unpatriotic," he said, "and I think that draws the line between what's right for the American people and American jobs and who's lining the pockets."
Just last week Ellsworth accused Republican Dan Coats of lying in a campaign ad. The new charge provoked a brisk response from the Coats campaign. "Their ads have been taken off the air and they have no other choice but to resort to offensive personal attacks against Dan Coats," said campaign spokesman Pete Seat.
Meantime, Coats gained an ally as the U.S. Chamber of Commerce began airing this ad attacking Ellsworth's vote in support of health care reform. The ad begins by saying, "Since going to Washington Brad Ellsworth's voted for trillions in new government spending."
Ellsworth must also defend his vote for the federal stimulus package. "Although our economy remains fragile it certainly was a shot in the arm that we needed at the time," he said today.
And yet he tries to turn every discussion into one about Dan Coats the lobbyist. "You may not agree with my votes," said Ellsworth at the union hall, "but I'll be able to explain why I voted and it won't be because somebody paid me and put money in my pocket."
Ellsworth has scheduled another Indianapolis news conference for tomorrow. But his TV ads are still off the air.