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Controversial Hispanic ad stirs up Senate race

October 20, 2010 12:00:00 AM PDT
A new campaign controversy erupts over a conservative group urging many Americans not to go to the polls November 2. This as Senate candidates Barbara Boxer and Carly Fiorina battle for every vote.After months of campaigning, the Senate race in California is, by many polls, statistically tied. So neither side can take any vote for granted. That's why an advertisement by an independent group urging Hispanics not to vote is causing an uproar.

Barbara Boxer and Carly Fiorina have been crisscrossing the state. Boxer was in Southern California at an event in Leimert Park Wednesday as the MTA announced new plans to build a light rail line through the Crenshaw area.

Carly Fiorina was in the city of Mendota in the Central Valley where she was endorsed by the Nisei Farmers League.

"Central Valley voters are very important. They're very important to my campaign and the Central Valley is very important to the future of California," said Fiorina.

Both candidates are trying to capture the Hispanic vote, which usually tilts Democratic. That vote could be crucial in a tight race. That's why one particular ad has some groups upset.

It encourages Hispanics not to vote, saying politicians haven't lived up to their promises. The candidates shown in the ad, however, are all Democrats. The ad was pulled by a radio station, and the Spanish-language network Univision refuses to air it.

The Republican group Latinos for Reform had planned to run it in Nevada, California and several other states.

"Anyone who urges people not to vote, then they don't understand democracy, and they don't understand America," said Boxer.

With less than two weeks to go the race is tight. In an exclusive Eyewitness News poll conducted by SurveyUSA, Boxer holds a 46 to 44 percent lead. Our last poll two weeks ago had Boxer leading by three points.

"Every one of my races are very close until the end. As a matter of fact, two out of the three, we were trailing," said Boxer. "So, this state wants to make sure who's on their side, and good for them. And I think they'll choose me in the end."

And if you like political ads, you're going to see a lot more of them. In the last business quarter, the two candidates raised about $6 million each. They have two weeks to spend it.


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