The gloves are coming off in that other New York City race: Eliot Spitzer vs. Scott Stringer. Stringer, the Manhattan borough president, is out with a harsh new Web ad titled “Colossal Failure,” despite saying previously he wouldn’t touch Spitzer’s prostitution scandal.
The ad opens up with footage from Spitzer’s resignation news conference in 2008. Watch Here
“You know how it ended,” the narrator reads over the video of Spitzer’s resignation, before saying, “Here’s how it began.”
Stringer, 53, had said several times since Spitzer, 54, entered the race for New York City comptroller that he would not talk about the former New York governor’s prostitution scandal and that he does not need to in order to win the race.
The video then takes the viewer through what it describes as Spitzer’s missteps as governor and some of the negative coverage aiming to remind viewers that it’s not just the big scandal they should remember.
“Eliot Spitzer promised reform,” the narrator claims. “Instead, he plunged Albany into political gridlock and new lows of dysfunction.”
The 80-second Internet ad also hits on what was known as Spitzer’s Troopergate scandal, where his aides allegedly instructed state police to spy on a political opponent, as well as budget shortfalls.
“Filled with lies, bullying, false accusations and conspiracy,” the narrator says. “Now, Eliot Spitzer’s running for comptroller. But we know how this story ends. Why would we ever go back to that?”
There are no plans “at this time” to air the ad on television, Stringer spokeswoman Audrey Gelman told ABC News.
“Eliot Spitzer ran on a platform of ethics and restoring integrity to Albany,” Gelman said in a separate statement. “Instead, as governor he alienated allies and persecuted opponents, leaving the Capitol more dysfunctional than ever, all before his administration collapsed under the weight of scandal.
“It’s a pattern we’ve seen before: Eliot Spitzer says one thing, and does another. Scott is running for comptroller to fight for the middle class and those trying to join it, and he has the independence, integrity and judgment to get the job done.”
Spitzer campaign spokesman Hari Sevugan responded to the ad in a statement, saying, “It’s sad but not surprising” that the video is “a negative, attack ad filled with mischaracterizations about Eliot and his record.”
“Just as we saw with the shadowy outside groups that are pouring in outside money to prop up Mr. Stringer’s flailing candidacy, this ad is another sign that that establishment is getting nervous that an independent voice fighting for the people’s interest will soon be in the comptroller’s office,” Sevugan said.
“As evidenced by the polls in the race, the people of New York know the truth: as governor and attorney general, Eliot stood up to powerful interests on behalf of everyday New Yorkers, while others stood by silently.”
The poll last week from NBC News Channel 4, The Wall Street Journal and Marist College has Spitzer leading Stringer 48 to 36 percent.