Shannon puts up first web ad

The campaign of Democratic Party attorney-general candidate Steve Shannon on Tuesday launched the first online campaign ad of the 2009 election, calling on his opponent, Ken Cuccinelli, to stand up to the reckless, incendiary rhetoric of one of his running mates. The video focuses on the statement by 99th House District candidate Catherine Crabill earlier this month, in which she told a cheering crowd that they “have a chance to fight this battle at the ballot box, before we have to resort to the bullet box.”

The remarks made national news, and Shannon’s earlier challenge to Cuccinelli to condemn the remarks has gone unanswered. Shannon is a state delegate and former criminal prosecutor from Fairfax County. Cuccinelli is a state senator, also from Fairfax.

“At a time when a lot of people in the country are on edge about their economic future, the last thing we need are candidates talking about armed violence because they don’t like election results. We need an attorney general with the leadership and principles to stand against this type of reckless rhetoric,” said Shannon. “If Ken Cuccinelli wants to be Virginia’s top law-enforcement official, he shouldn’t have a problem condemning these remarks and the implication that violence is an acceptable solution to any political dispute.”

After the video of Ms. Crabill’s remarks became public two weeks ago, Del. Shannon condemned the remarks and called on his opponent to do the same. Shannon also asked Cuccinelli whether he believed the president of the United States and his administration were “domestic terrorists,” as Ms. Crabill claimed. Cuccinelli and his top adviser have both dismissed the issue, with the manager, Chris LaCivita, saying concerns about Crabill’s remarks were “stupid.”

“There are stark differences between Steve Shannon and Ken Cuccinelli on the critical public safety issues facing Virginia and we are going to continue to make sure the people of Virginia know about them,” Shannon campaign manager Mike Henry said. “As attorney general, Steve Shannon will not use his office as a platform for his own political agenda, his agenda will be protecting our communities by cracking down on drug dealers, drunk drivers and Internet predators who target our kids.”

This will be the first paid advertisement by either candidate in the 2009 race for attorney general. It will first debut as part of an Internet advertising campaign on sites such as Facebook.com.

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