Reality Check: Hovde attacks opponents’ records in US Senate race

Hovde ad targets Mark Neumann, Tommy Thompson
Reality Check: Hovde attacks opponents’ records in US Senate race

Trying to stay above the fray, political newcomer Eric Hovde accuses his opponents in the U.S. Senate race of unfair attacks on his record in a recent ad, then he proceeds to attack their records.

“Mark Neumann and Tommy Thompson are slinging mud to distract from their own weaknesses,” Hovde says in the ad. “Just like Congresman Neumann savaged Scott Walker, now he’s distorting my record.”

WISC-TV found this is misleading. It’s hard to say that Neumann “savaged” Walker, given that Walker ultimately prevailed in the GOP gubernatorial primary in 2010 by 20 points. Neumann ran negative ads against Walker, and Walker did the same against Neumann.

“Neumann hopes you’ll forget his four votes to raise the national debt, and Tommy Thompson is desperate to hide his support for Obamacare,” Hovde says in the ad.

WISC-TV found this needs clarification. Neumann did vote four times to raise the national debt limit, but so did the other three Wisconsin Republicans in Congress at the time.

The debt limit increases happened multiple times in 1995 and 1996 as the Republican-controlled U.S. House tried to come up with spending cut proposals tied to a long-term increase in the debt.


Did Tommy Thompson support the federal health care law?

Thompson was outspoken about his general support for reform of the nation’s health care system and argued for a compromise on the issue. The Obama administration used Thompson’s support for change as a talking point, but he did not in fact ever directly endorse the legislation.

Thompson now says he does not support the president’s health care law and said the measure needs to be “repealed, replaced and rewritten.”