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New McAuliffe Va. governor’s race ads feature testimonials from Vince Callahan, Tim Kaine

Terry McAuliffe is again tapping his well of surrogates to boost his campaign for Virginia governor, airing new ads featuring Sen. Timothy M. Kaine and former delegate Vince Callahan.

McAuliffe has been aggressive in promoting his support from current and former Republicans, including Callahan, who endorsed the Democrat in March. Callahan was the longest-serving Republican in state House history, though he has crossed the aisle before, endorsing Mark Warner (D) for Senate in 2008.

“We need someone to oversee our state who is committed to keeping Virginia on the right track,” Callahan says in the ad. “That’s why I cannot support Ken Cuccinelli. I want an independent Governor who focuses on jobs and works with everyone to do what’s best for Virginia. That’s why I’m backing Terry McAuliffe.

Responding to the ad, Cuccinelli spokeswoman Anna Nix said her boss “has broad bipartisan support, including an endorsement from the Northern Virginia Technology Council’s TECHPac and lifelong Democrat School Board Member Tichi Eppes, due to his substantive, detailed policy proposals to grow the economy, create 58,000 new jobs, and improve our children’s education.”

Kaine, the last Democrat to serve as Virginia governor, is boosting McAuliffe by appearing in a Spanish-language ad. Kaine became fluent in the language when he served as a missionary in Honduras.

In the spot, Kaine says McAuliffe is a strong supporter of the Hispanic community and backs the DREAM Act “with his entire soul.”

But Nix said McAuliffe’s “campaign promises would raise taxes on the average Hispanic family by $1,700 each year. Ken Cuccinelli, by contrast, has detailed plans that would create 58,000 new jobs and save Virginia families $700 a year by lowering the individual income tax rate and closing special interest tax loopholes.”

(Nix‘s numbers on the McAuliffe “campaign promises” come from an analysis Cuccinelli’s team did, combining estimates from a variety of different sources. McAuliffe’s campaign accused Cuccinelli of “making up numbers.” The numbers on Cuccinelli’s economic plan come from the conservative Thomas Jefferson Institute.

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