“Hack Lawyer” – Shapiro Ad Slams Heidelbaugh
Josh Shapiro didn’t mince words. The incumbent Attorney General launched his first television ad this week, describing his challenger as “the insurance company’s candidate,” and a “hack lawyer.”
It was a response to Republican hopeful Heather Heidelbaugh, whose first ad included a thinly veiled jab at Shapiro for his rumored interest in running for governor in 2022,
First reported by Philly Clout, the 30 second spot begins fending off the charges made by Heidelbaugh’s ad, then moves on to touting his record in the office.
“Negative attack ads that distort the record of Josh Shapiro,” a voiceover says to begin the ad. “The ads are paid for by people backing the insurance company’s candidate: hack lawyer, Heather Heidelbaugh.”
It pivots to positive.
“But Attorney General Josh Shapiro has fought for us,” a narrator says. “Taking on opioid manufacturers that poisoned our communities, fighting big insurance companies to protect our healthcare, and holding Catholic Church officials accountable for covering up sexual abuse.”
Heidelbaugh’s campaign punched back by touting her decades long legal career and described Shapiro as a “career political with no real qualifications” for the statewide office.
“Josh Shapiro’s callous attempt to undermine the successful, 35 year legal career of Heather Heidelbaugh with false attacks does nothing but prove his fear of defeat this November,” said Heidelbaugh Campaign Manager, Ashleigh Pisarcik. “It didn’t take long for Mr. Shapiro to resort to name calling—a tactic not surprising from a career politician with no real qualifications to hold the office of Attorney General.”
Philly Clout reports that “Heidelbaugh has spent almost $95,000 of the $162,000 in air time her campaign has booked, according to Advertising Analytics. Shapiro has spent almost $130,000 of the $309,000 he has booked.”
The Shapiro campaign said that this current ad is airing in Pittsburgh, Philadelphia, Wilkes-Barre/Scranton, Harrisburg, Johnstown and Erie.
While this is just the first TV attack ads in the race, Heidelbaugh’s campaign delivered shots through digital ads over the past few months.
In May, the Heidelbaugh campaign released a 60 second digital ad criticizing Shapiro over his response to COVID-19 in the state. Heidelbaugh’s campaign also released a digital ad in July that attempted to link Shapiro to Philadelphia District Attorney Larry Krasner and included images of Philadelphia police officers killed in the line of duty. FOP Lodge 5 President John McNesby blasted the ad for the use of those images of the fallen officers. That ad is no longer on the Heidelbaugh campaign’s Youtube channel.
Shapiro bested Republican John Rafferty by about 2.5 points for the open AG seat in 2016.
The Cook Political Report rates the race as Likely Democratic.