Just hours after Jeff Brandes began airing his first television ad of the year in his Senate District 22 seat race against Democratic challenger Judithanne McLauchlan, the USFSP political science teacher fired back.
Here's the St.Petersburg-based GOP legislator's ad, in which he takes pride in his legislation to address the private flood insurance issue that blew up in Pinellas County towards the end of last year.
Brandes' legislation would establish a private market alternative to the National Flood Insurance Program, which faced massive premium spikes because of reforms set by the controversial Biggert-Waters Act enacted by Congress in 2012.
But the McLauchlan team released a statement this advertising calling the ad "false and misleading," saying that it completely mischaracterizes his work on flood insurance and what it means for homeowners and small business owners in Tampa Bay.
“I’m extremely disappointed that my opponent is grossly misleading Tampa Bay families on the vitally important issue of rising flood insurance rates," McLauchlan said. "Instead of working to find a solution to rising rates that works for middle-class families, my opponent would rather force hard-working people into a corner where their only option is to get risky coverage from unstable, fly-by-night private plans."
McLauchlan goes on to say that if elected, she'll work to ensure that Floridians are protected and secure, "rather than letting insurance companies profit and sticking middle-class Floridians with the bill."
Back in March, Congress passed legislation
that would keep flood insurance rates from climbing more than 15 percent each year for primary homes, with a hard cap of 18 percent.
The SD 22 seat encompasses both southern Pinellas and part of Hillsborough County.