Worried About Primary Election, Cathy McMorris Rodgers Resorts to 22-year-old Disproven Attack on Lisa Brown

Lisa Brown Campaign     Friday, July 20, 2018

The Lisa Brown for Congress campaign is gaining significant momentum as the Aug. 7 Primary Election inches closer.

A week ago Brown filed her second quarter FEC report, which showed that in a head-to-head comparison of direct campaign contributions Brown outraised 14-year incumbent Cathy McMorris Rodgers. With more than 10,000 unique individual contributors, hundreds of people volunteering out of four campaign offices throughout the district, and endorsements from organizations from EMILY’s List to End Citizen United, the Cook Political Report considers WA-05 one of the races with “strong potential to become Toss Ups.”

Just this week, the Brown campaign released two new ads (here and here) highlighting the real choice voters have this election between Brown, who helped establish the breast and cervical cancer screening program, expanded children’s health care, and helped lead the creation of the WSU medical school and Spokane Teaching Health Center, and McMorris Rodgers, who voted more than 50 times to repeal or remove key provisions from the Affordable Care Act.

After 14 years in Congress and not enough to show for it, Rep. McMorris Rodgers has resorted to using two of her last three TV ads to attack Brown using partisan monikers and scare tactics. McMorris Rodgers’ most recent ad features a 22-year-old false attack about punishments for sex offenders that Republicans first tried to use against Brown in 1996.

“When this attack appeared in 1996, Lisa called it ‘a new low in political campaigning in Spokane,’” said Jack Sorensen, spokesperson. “Twenty-two years later and it’s a new low in campaigning for the 5th Congressional District. It’s just as false now as it was then, and we think voters would rather have a productive conversation about this election and the issues that matter to them in 2018.”

McMorris Rodgers’ ad uses two attacks that are demonstrably false:

CLAIM

REALITY

Brown “Proposed Ending... Supervision Of Felony Sex Offenders”

Brown voted for the final version of the bill.

Brown voted for the House-amended final version of SB 5891, which “spells out specifically the crimes for which community supervision is required, including sexual misconduct, and lifts the one-year limit on supervision.”

Brown Voted “Against A Bill…Preventing Sex Offenders From Living Near Schools”

Brown called the bill a “Hero Bill” in 1996 because it was poorly written and did not include actual protections for children.

The bill (HB 2734) was a political stunt to create an issue for politicians to campaign on, and never received a vote in the Senate.

It was “legislation that sounds great, but accomplishes nothing. [Brown] also questioned why the bill would keep sex offenders away from colleges, but lacked any protections for pre-schools or child-care centers. ‘I saw it as more paperwork, and not accomplishing more safety for children,’ she said … Brown said she has repeatedly voted to get tough with sex offenders. She backed a new law last session that demands life sentences for repeat sex offenders.”

At the time local Republicans first made this false attack against Brown, she was the mother of a 4-year-old child.

The ad is a gross distortion of Brown’s 20 years in the Legislature working with Democrats and Republicans on improving safety for communities and families. In 2003 she was the prime sponsor of SB 5570, a bill requested by then-Attorney General Christine Gregoire, which made it a crime to communicate with a minor for "immoral purposes," regardless of whether the offender met with the minor in person. The bill passed the Legislature and was signed into law in 2003.[4][5]

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[1] TIME, 3/24/17

[2] The Columbian, “Monitor of sex offenders learns to ride herd on legislators,” 5/29/11

[3] The Spokesman-Review, “Brown Denounces Latest Moyer Ads Sex Offender Commercials Called ‘New Low’ In Spokane Politics,” 11/1/96

[4] The Spokesman Review, "Bill would make catching child predators online easier ; Police wouldn't have to arrange meeting with suspected molesters to allow charges" 2/14/03

[5] The News Tribune, 2/15/03

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