U.S. Senate candidate Manny Sethi released a statewide ad Thursday criticizing his opponent in the Republican primary, Bill Hagerty, for past connections to Mitt Romney and Al Gore.
This, according to a press release that Sethi’s campaign emailed Thursday.
Sethi’s campaign titled the ad “Romney, Gore, and Common Core.”
In the press release, Sethi Campaign Chair Chris Devaney said the ad highlights important differences between the two candidates.
“Bill Hagerty is attacking Dr. Manny Sethi for giving $50 to a family friend,” Devaney said.
“Meanwhile Hagerty gave $100,000 to Mitt Romney, donated to Al Gore, and Hagerty’s company made millions off Common Core. Hagerty is desperate and scared. He should be—Manny Sethi is winning.”
Sethi, in the ad, asks “why is the establishment attacking a nice guy like me?”
Hagerty campaign spokeswoman Abigail Sigler addressed the ad in an email Thursday. The Tennessee Star specifically asked Sigler about Sethi’s claim that Hagerty made millions of dollars off Common Core and whether it was true.
“Of course, Bill worked to defeat Barack Obama in 2012, unlike Massachusetts Manny Sethi who applied to be in the Obama Biden White House. Manny Sethi’s Never Trumpers have been attacking Bill since the day President Trump endorsed and announced his run for Senate,” Sigler said.
“President Trump looked at all the candidates in this race, and he endorsed Bill because he trusts Bill to stand with him to protect conservative values, get our economy going again, hold China accountable, and stand up for life.”
In 2009 members of the Obama White House announced on their website that Sethi was one of many national finalists for the 2009-2010 class of White House fellows.
Sethi Campaign Manager Forrest Barnwell-Hagemeyer emailed The Star Thursday and offered the following statement:
“Hagerty was appointed to the President’s Commission on White House Fellowships by Bill Clinton and re-appointed by Obama. Manny applied for a non-partisan academic fellowship from the Commission, while Hagerty was still on the Commission. Now, Hagerty is attacking Manny for applying to be a part of a group of which Hagerty was a member,” Barnwell-Hagemeyer said adding “it’s all a smokescreen.”
As The Star reported this month, Hagerty donated $1,000 each to the presidential campaigns of both Al Gore and George W. Bush in the year 2000, according to Federal Election Commission filings. That year Hagerty, according to his LinkedIn page, worked at the private equity investment firm Hagerty Peterson & Company LLC in Nashville, a position he held until July 2017. Hagerty said on his LinkedIn page that he co-founded the company.
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