tags: , , , , , America’s Voice Research on Immigration Reform, Press Releases

Latest Examples of the GOP Immigration Attack Ads

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A recent CNN analysis by Catherine Shoichet finds that more than $150 million has been spent on immigration attack ads this year – up fivefold over 2014.

America’s Voice is tracking these anti-immigrant attack ads and featuring some of the ugliest examples at the new America’s Voice “Divide and Distract” website, which includes a searchable database of the worst of the worst immigration ads we’ve seen this cycle.

Below are some of the most recent examples:

  • In Arizona’s Senate race, Defend Arizona, a superPAC supporting GOP candidate Rep. Martha McSally, is running Facebook ads attacking Democratic candidate Rep. Kyrsten Sinema for “turning her back on law enforcement” and supposedly supporting sanctuary cities.
  • In Georgia’s Governor race, GOP candidate and current Secretary of State Brian Kemp is running Facebook ads claiming Democratic candidate Stacey Abrams wants “illegals” to vote, including one featuring former ICE Director Tom Homan. One includes a video of Kemp’s interview on FOX.

The 2017 Virginia gubernatorial election should have offered a cautionary tale for the GOP about the dangers of this focus in the homestretch of a campaign. Republican Ed Gillespie relied on race-baiting MS-13 ads down to the stretch in hopes of overtaking Democrat Ralph Northam, and ended up losing by a whopping 9 points. As Geoff Garin, the pollster for Northam, recently told Robert Draper of the New York Times, “Gillespie ran the kinds of MS-13 ads that are now running in other parts of the country. We measured a real backlash to that advertising with suburban voters, in part because it connected Gillespie to the anti-immigrant thrust of Trump’s persona.”

Here’s a rundown of other early and special elections – in Florida, Pennsylvania, Florida, Missouri, Alabama, New York, and New Jersey – that underscore just how ineffective the GOP’s anti-immigrant scapegoating has been to date.