An attack ad that implies Republican gubernatorial candidate Mark Ronchetti praised banning abortion with no exceptions is continuing to air on TV despite efforts last week by his campaign’s legal team to get it removed.
[The ad] says Ronchetti “praised” the U.S. Supreme Court “for letting politicians outlaw abortion with no exceptions for rape or incest,” a reference to the overturning of Roe v. Wade, which eliminated the federal constitutional right to abortion and left the decision up to states.
In response to [Ronchetti Attorney Matthew] Chandler’s demand networks take the ad off the air, A Stronger New Mexico, the PAC linked to the Democratic Governors Association, said its ad is accurate. The ad includes a tweet from Ronchetti, who wrote, “states will rightly make decisions regarding abortion” after the Supreme Court’s decision on Roe v. Wade was leaked in May.
“The advertisement says nothing about Mr. Ronchetti’s own support for these exceptions — as his letter erroneously argues — but rather that he praised the Supreme Court for letting politicians regulate abortion as they see fit, as Wisconsin Republicans have pledged to do,” Ezra Reese, an attorney representing A Stronger New Mexico, wrote in a letter to station managers. “Given that the Dobbs opinion itself makes clear that the decision to regulate abortion now lies exclusively with politicians in states, there is simply no basis to say the ad’s claim is false.”
[Ronchetti communications director Ryan] Sabel also took aim at the TV stations.
“We did not expect the media to correct the record and tell the truth as they have aided the Governor at every opportunity,” he wrote. “We simply wanted to set the record straight and give them an opportunity to do the right thing on the outside chance they would.”
Ronchetti used to be in the media business. He is the former chief meteorologist for KRQE-TV.
The letter from Reese, the attorney for the PAC, indicates the Ronchetti campaign has tried to get an ad pulled from the air at least once before.
The abortion ad mostly criticizes Ronchetti for scrubbing his campaign website on the issue of abortion.
“He tried to make it disappear,” a narrator says at the beginning of the ad. “But Mark Ronchetti got caught, trying to erase his long record opposing abortion rights.”
As a 2020 U.S. Senate candidate, Ronchetti stated “life should be protected at all stages” and that “unborn babies just happen to be living inside their mother.” […]