(Editor's update: Politifact graded this ad "mostly false" on May 31.)
The tone of the US Senate race between incumbent Democrat Sherrod Brown and Republican Congressman Jim Renacci may have been set by the very first ad, which ends its short run on broadcast and cable TV around the state today.
Brown’s ad refers to Renacci’s registration as a lobbyist for a firm he worked for as an accountant in 2008. He filed paperwork two months ago showing that registration was deactivated in 2009.
Brown doesn’t characterize the ad as negative. “People know what I stand for, and they know whom I fight for. They know my record. We just are pointing out and making the contrast between me and my opponent.”
Brown comes into the race with high name ID and more than $12 million dollars. The much less well known Renacci came out of his contested primary with just over $4 million. His spokesperson says in a statement that Renacci has never at any point been a lobbyist and that Brown’s claim is – quoting here – “absurd and patently false and unsupported by any evidence”.