First gubernatorial campaign ads begin airing, race still wide o - WSLS 10 NBC in Roanoke/Lynchburg Va

First gubernatorial campaign ads begin airing, race still wide open

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The first campaign ads of the 2013 Virginia Governor's race will begin airing Monday, at a time when both candidates find themselves having to play defense in light of recent controversies.

The first spot comes from Republican candidate Ken Cuccinelli.  It's called "All About" and features his wife Tiero Cuccinelli, who paints her husband as a man who stands up for people in need.

As several recent polls have indicated, one of the main problems for both Cuccinelli and his Democratic challenger Terry McAuliffe is that many voters say they don't know enough about them to make a decision on who they would vote for.

The ad attempts to define Cuccinelli in a positive light -- a far cry from the picture both campaigns have painted of one another up to this point.

Democrats have been going after Cuccinelli for initially choosing not to recuse himself from a lawsuit that a company he had owned stock in has filed against the state (as Attorney General, his office would be responsible for representing the Commonwealth in the case).  Now they're accusing him of being dishonest after he told reporters on Friday he would be amending his Statement of Economic Interest reports to include five gifts the head of that company gave him.  Cuccinelli has said he simply overlooked them.

Republicans, meanwhile, continue to hammer McAuliffe on an electric car company he started in July 2012 called Green Tech -- which once promised 1,500 new jobs, but currently employs less than 100 people.  McAuliffe has since stepped down as chairman of the company, but did not publicly acknowledge that fact until this month.  He's also been criticized for opening the company's plant in Mississippi rather than Virginia.

Real Clear Politics, a respected site that tracks public opinion polls, shows Cuccinelli with a slight lead heading into May.  The percentage of undecided voters in those surveys, however, remains high.


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