Responding to an attack ad released by the Republican Party of Kentucky on Friday, the campaign to re-elect Democratic Attorney General Jack Conway is scolding Republican challenger Todd P’Pool for taking money from universities that are under investigation. The GOP released the YouTube video to mark 100 days of criticizing Conway for helping his brother, Matt, obtain legal counsel while he was the focus of a narcotics investigation.
But Conway campaign manager Melissa Wideman stiff armed the GOP’s line of questioning and says the online advertisement is a desperate attempt to tie the attorney general to his brother, who maintains he did not interfere in the probe on his brother’s behalf.
“It is a shameful and dishonest attack by someone who is 26 points down in the polls,” she says. A poll conducted by cn|2 Pure Politics in June showed Conway ahead of P’Pool by a 56 to 30 point lead with 14 percent of voters still undecided. At the time, Republicans pointed out that P’Pool had little name recognition compared to Conway, who ran for U.S. Senate last year, and had not run any advertisements.
Wideman went further, however, highlighting a revelation by a former admissions officer at the for-profit Spencerian College in Louisville. Executives with the school who are being investigated by Conway’s office are calling the probe a political sham and have urged employees to support P’Pool in the fall election.
“One thing is for sure, you won’t see a ‘for sale’ sign in front of the Office of the Attorney General with Jack Conway. You certainly can’t say the same about his opponent who is soliciting donations from entities under investigation by the Office of the Attorney General,” says Wiseman.
State campaign finance records show the chancellor of Sullivan University, which owns Spencerian, and other school officials have contributed $12,000 to the GOP challenger’s campaign.