NASHVILLE - With a week to go until Election Day, Democrat Lenda Sherrell on Tuesday released a new television ad that seeks to counter Republican U.S. Rep. Scott DesJarlais' efforts to link her to President Barack Obama and also challenges the congressman to "come clean" about his voting record.
"Sorry to disappoint you Congressman DesJarlais, but I'm not Barack Obama," Sherrell, a retired accountant from Monteagle, says in the 30-second spot that began running Monday. "Now that I've come clean, why won't you? Tell the truth."
Sherrell then takes the 4th Congressional District incumbent to task, charging, "you voted to turn Medicare into a voucher system and to raise the retirement age. Admit that you rejected a pay raise for soldiers but voted for retroactive pay for yourself and your Washington buddies."
"I've come clean, won't you Dr. DesJarlais? I'm running for Congress. Barack Obama isn't."
The congressman in his first ad last week hit Sherrell, calling her "Liberal Lenda" and criticizing her work as a one-time district volunteer for Organizing for Action, which supports Obama's agenda.
DesJarlais' spokesman, Robert Jameson, recently said that Sherrell's involvement in OFA is fair game, adding, Sherrell "wants to make this race about anything and everything but her political ideology and her record."
Sherrell said in a statement that DesJarlais is trying to "deceive voters into thinking that I represent President Obama. But the truth is I am Lenda Sherrell, not a career politician. And I'm running for Congress because many in our district are struggling."
She said that "like many Tennesseans, I did and continue to do my civic duty on issues people are concerned about, such as protecting Medicare and Social Security, access to health care, minimum wage, equal pay for equal work, and veterans benefits."
Early voting continues through Thursday in the Nov. 4 election.
Contact staff writer Andy Sher at email@example.com or 615-255-0550.