The Jefferson County Democratic Party has released an advertisement via YouTube against Republican mayoral candidate Hal Heiner, which alleges he has a financial stake in pushing for the construction of the East End bridge.
The 39-second attack ad says Heiner, who represents the 19th District on the Metro Council, owns a business park in southern Indiana and accuses him of having a personal motive in his push to build a span that would connect southern Indiana and Kentucky at Interstate 265.
Check it out:
In September, Heiner’s opponent, Democrat Greg Fischer announced he was putting his business properties in southern Indiana up for sale because it would be a conflict of interest. In an e-mail request sent earlier today, LEO has asked the Fischer campaign for any documentation that their candidate has sought to or has relinquished the Indiana property.
In a telephone interview, Joe Burgan, Heiner’s campaign manager told LEO Weekly that the city lawmaker has turned over the company’s operations, but does still retain a financial stake in the business that he would relinquish to a blind trust if elected.
“It’s desperation. It’s Greg Fischer running a poll with a message they’ve tested and turned over to the Democratic Party,” says Burgan. “It’s not something you do when you’re leading in the polls. And I expect it to continue, unfortunately.”
Meanwhile, the local press has already begun connecting the dots to Fischer, who has a history of mudslinging in political races. When asked about their role in the online video, the Fischer campaign wouldn’t answer directly if it had anything to do with the attack ad.
In an internal poll conducted for the Fischer campaign in recent weeks, the Indiana property question was among the issues tested (most notably, the poll also included questions about the Jefferson County Public Schools student assignment plan).
Yet, when asked if the Fischer campaign had any role with the ad or had consulted with the Democratic party, Fischer spokesman Chris Poynter would only say “It’s a party ad.”
The East End bridge is part of the $4.1 billion Ohio River Bridges Project, which Heiner has said needs to be scaled back and revamped in the face of $3 tolls. The east Louisville Republican has said completing the East End bridge would be a priority in his first term if elected mayor.