Reality Check: The Truth About Those Wis. Political Ads

MINNEAPOLIS (WCCO) — Millions of dollars have been spent in the air war to win Wisconsin’s controversial recall elections. But is what you’re seeing even true?

Forget for just a moment that the voice you hear in this Wisconsin political ad is NOT the actor Morgan Freeman.

“Here’s what Shelley Moore thinks about taxes,” the ad begins.

It’s a Morgan Freeman sound-alike ad from a special interest group, attacking Democrat Shelley Moore.

And it’s not just a fake actor — the claims border on fiction, too.

“Moore and her union support a government-run health plan that would raise taxes by $510 a month for every Wisconsin worker, and give free health care to illegal aliens,” asserts the ad by the group, Citizens for a Strong America.

This is a clever distortion, and it’s highly MISLEADING.

Despite using the inflammatory words “illegal aliens,” most states, including Wisconsin, don’t provide health care for illegal immigrants.

EXCEPT: In the case of emergencies, and pregnancies. And that’s not new.

Meanwhile, a labor backed group called We Are Wisconsin uses comical drama to describe Republican Sheila Harsdorf, showing workers putting money in a jar, and a rich-looking woman dressed in diamonds and pearls taking money out.

“Thanks to Senator Harsdorf’s support of Governor Walker’s budget, families will pay more in taxes. But big corporations and the super rich will get millions in tax breaks,” the ad states.

Despite the ‘Richie-Rich’ flourish, the claim is PARTLY TRUE, but it is an EXAGGERATION.

Harsdorf voted for Gov. Walker’s budget, raising health care and pension costs for state workers, which the unions agreed to. The budget does include tax cuts for businesses and investors, including a tax holiday for new badger state companies.

By the way, the Wisconsin Democratic Party is asking television stations to remove the Morgan Freeman sound-alike ad.

It’s from a group called Citizens for a Strong America, which has not returned our calls for comment.

There are six recall elections statewide and the latest estimates are that $30 million will be spent, most of it by outside groups.

Harsdorf is outspending Moore — $437,000 to $338,000, which is also an unusually large amount of money for a State Senate seat.

Reality Check Links:
‘Morgan Freeman’ Sound Alike Ad
Health Care For Wisconsin Immigrants
Report: The Impact Of Illegal Immigration On Minnesota
Shelia Harsdorf Ad
We Are Wisconsin
Politifact On Wisconsin Ad
CBS News: Wis. Gov. Signs Budget
JS Online: Walker Signs Budget Bill
Wisconsin Democratic Party
Wisconsin GOP
Citizens For America
Leader-Telegram: Harsdorf Outspends Moore

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