Opinion

Take a skeptical view of political attack ads

An editorial from The Herald-Dispatch

HUNTINGTON, W.Va. —  Thank goodness for Anthony Wood. In the 1990s, his company Replay TV pioneered the development of the digital video recorder or the “DVR,” as we call it today.

If it weren’t for that technology, it might be hard to make it through October.

The barrage of political attack ads has begun in earnest, and residents in our TV markets get hit from three different states. With a little recording and quick use of the remote, you can fast forward through some of those messages.

But as many voters agree and some politicians agree, the sheer volume of the mean-spirited and misleading attacks add a regrettable tone to the whole campaign season. Campaign organizers often look for a hot button issue that they feel will drive voters in one direction or another, even if the candidates’ positions are fairly similar.

That certainly seems to be the case in the 3rd District Congressional race, where incumbent Democratic U.S. Rep. Nick Rahall and Republican state Sen. Evan Jenkins have been running back and forth ads about coal issues and black lung benefits, in particular…

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