Political analyst weighs in on Paul Davis pulling campaign ad

By: David Marcus Email
By: David Marcus Email

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WICHITA, Kan.- Kansas Democratic gubernatorial candidate Paul Davis has pulled a televised campaign ad today, after it was learned that an actor appearing in that ad has an arrest record for sex crimes.

Jeff Montague, who appeared next to Davis in the ad, may have been an actor, but it's the part he apparently played in real life that concerned the campaign.

The Republican Party released documents showing that Montague was arrested back in 2007 for solicitation of sodomy. Before that, in 1989, he was suspended from a teaching position at a Topeka high school for "inappropriate conduct with a male foreign exchange student." He was also banned from the Boy Scouts of America.

After taking the ad down today, Davis released this statement:
"Today, it was brought to our attention that a participant in one of those ads has serious issues in his background. Upon hearing of these issues, the ad, which ran for a few hours, was pulled down immediately. I want to apologize to Kansans for this mistake."

Political analyst Ken Ciboski says Davis did not make the right response.

"I think he should have just pulled the ad and let it go at that and said, 'obviously we should have examined this, we should have paid more careful attention to it but not apologize," Ciboski says. "He apologized to the people of Kansas. He says, I apologize to the people of Kansas. I think that was a little too strong. I would not have advised him to do that."

The parts in political ads are mostly filled by casting agencies and it's unlikely Davis ever met the actor before the ad was filmed. Still, Ciboski says, his opponents could use it to declare that Davis doesn't know people.

"Perception has become reality. And it's really difficult to overcome that, isn't it?", says Ciboski.

Soon after the ad was pulled, the Kansas Republican Party declared the mistake 'cause for concern' about Paul Davis's judgment.

The actor, Jeff Montague, was affiliated with the Boy Scouts for 14 years before he was allegedly forced to resign in 1989.

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