Florida's GOP candidates for U.S. Senate are slinging all kinds of mud this week. Former Sen. George LeMieux cited court records detailing his rival, Rep. Connie Mack IV's, questionable past: bar fights as a young man (specifically, one in which baseball pro Ron Gant broke Mack's ankle in 1992), road rage, domestic incidents, financial problems, lawsuits and an accusation of strong-arming his wife during their divorce.
“You cannot study a rap sheet like that without concluding that Connie Mack IV is the Charlie Sheen of Florida politics," LeMieux said. "Connie Mack IV lacks the character and temperament to serve as a United States Senator.”
The Miami Herald, which has been following the story, reports Mack's campaign responded to the dig on Thursday, calling it "outrageous and offensive."
"George, your embarrassing campaign has gone beyond slinging mud to rapidly sinking into quicksand, which for you, must be a very lonely and desperate place," Mack's campaign wrote.
Records show that Mack, who has campaigned on fiscal responsibility, personally spent more than he earned. "Mack has made penny-pinching debt-reduction central to his U.S. Senate campaign, but privately he has struggled at times with borrowing and paying his own obligations," reports the Herald. The congressman blamed his financial problems in part on his divorce.
The son of former U.S. Sen. Connie Mack III entered the race with good name recognition and much fanfare, but his early popularity has faded. Though still leading in the polls, Mack came in third and last place in Florida's recent GOP women straw poll. LeMieux came in first.
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