San Francisco officials said they were sideswiped by an ad attacking Democrat Jon Ossoff that featured his face plastered on the back of one of the city’s iconic cable cars.
The San Francisco Chronicle reported Tuesday that the city’s Municipal Transportation Agency will send the Congressional Leadership Fund a cease-and-desist demand to pull down the 30-second spot. The agency cited a policy against images of the cable cars being used in political advertisements.
“The cable car is an iconic landmark that attracts people and attention from all over the world,” agency spokesman Paul Rose told The Chronicle. “And I think we can all agree that it is best left un-Photoshopped.”
A spokeswoman for the super PAC, which has ties to House Speaker Paul Ryan, said it “followed all guidelines” and worked with the San Francisco Film Commission to obtain proper permits and submit paperwork to use the image.
“It is no surprise that Jon Ossoff’s favorite city is rushing to his defense to hide his connections to Nancy Pelosi and Bay Area liberals,” said the spokeswoman, Courtney Alexander. “We welcome the extra attention on our ad and Jon Ossoff’s liberal record.”
“We already have Nancy Pelosi as our Congresswoman,” says one actor, “now you’re going to give us Jon Ossoff as our Congressman.”
The cable car makes a cameo at the end of the ad, wrapped with Ossoff’s picture, a peace sign and a blue banner that proclaims him “San Francisco’s Congressman.”
It continued a trend among conservative groups linking Ossoff to Nancy Pelosi, the leader of the House Democrats who represents a San Francisco-based district. He has dismissed those attacks as “smears” from a predictable GOP playbook.
The ad hit the airwaves as part of the super PAC’s $6.5 million campaign in the suburban Atlanta district, which stretches from east Cobb to north DeKalb. Ossoff and Republican Karen Handel square off in a June 20 runoff that’s seen as a must-win for the GOP, and the race is already the costliest U.S. House contest in history.
More recent AJC coverage of the 6th District race: