By Lisa Hagen
A major Democratic super-PAC on Tuesday released its first TV ad of the cycle, accusing Rep. Scott Garrett (R-N.J.) of discriminating against the LGBT community.
The House Majority PAC’s ad highlights quotes from newspapers and businesses condemning Garrett, who came under fire last year for reportedly saying he wouldn’t pay dues to the House Republicans’ campaign arm because it recruits and supports gay candidates.
The 30-second spot will run on cable in Garrett’s North Jersey district starting Tuesday.
The ad comes the wake of the Sunday mass shooting over the weekend at an Orlando, Fla., gay nightclub that killed 49 and injured 53. It is the deadliest mass shooting in U.S. history.
“Newspapers, businesses, and everyday citizens are taking a stand against Garrett’s shameless, bigoted rhetoric and record," House Majority PAC spokesman Jeb Fain said in a statement.
"This summer, House Majority PAC will be making sure as many voters as possible know the facts about Congressman Garrett’s hateful agenda.”
Garrett faces a challenge from Democratic rival and former Bill Clinton speechwriter Josh Gottheimer.
Garrett’s GOP-leaning seat will be a tough pick-up opportunity for Democrats. The distrect went narrowly for Mitt Romney in 2012 and was won by John McCain in 2008 by 10 points.
But the Democratic Congressional Campaign Committee (DCCC) has included his seat in its “Red to Blue” program, which targets specific House district it thinks the party can flip.
Democrats have an uphill climb in taking back control of the House, needing to net 30 seats. But they feel emboldened with presumptive GOP presidential nominee Donald Trump at the top of the ticket.
There aren’t enough GOP-held toss-up seats to win back the majority, so the Democratic Party will need to tap into districts like Garrett’s in order to have a shot at capturing the lower chamber.
From The Hill on June 14, 2016.