BY WESLEY P. HESTER
The final push is on ahead of next Tuesday’s Republican U.S. Senate primary, a four-way race between former Gov. George Allen, Chesapeake minister E.W. Jackson, Chesterfield County tea party activist Jamie Radtke and state Del. Robert G. Marshall, R-Prince William.
Allen, the race’s front-runner, is out today with a statewide radio ad targeting conservative audiences. The ad, like Allen’s campaign, targets Washington and Democratic nominee and fellow former Gov. Timothy M. Kaine.
“Washington. Pushing the Obama/Kaine agenda, ignoring us,” the ad begins. “Obamacare, a government takeover of health care. Small businesses strangled by costly regulations. Record debt, debt our children will be forced to pay back.”
The ad says a vote for Allen on June 12 would send a message to President Barack Obama and “his liberal hand-picked party chairman, Tim Kaine.”
It also touts Allen’s record as governor and U.S. Senator and his “pro-growth plan: rein in Washington, unleash our energy resources, create jobs.”
The ad comes as Allen continues his “Send a Message” tour to rally support for the primary. In the days ahead, Allen will hold events with House Majority Leader Eric Cantor, R-7th, and Gov. Bob McDonnell among others. Supplementing the ads and events, the campaign has also launched an aggressive e-mail, mail and phone call push.
Kaine campaign spokeswoman Brandi Hoffine responded by blasting Allen’s record while touting Kaine’s.
“The last thing Virginians need is six more years of George Allen’s economic policies that took us from record surplus to massive deficits and helped create our current economic mess,” she said.
Meanwhile, one of Allen’s GOP rivals, Chesapeake minister E.W. Jackson, has put on quite a show in his final push, making a series of attacks on Kaine.
Yesterday, Jackson held an event at a Goochland County rest stop, one of the 19 shuttered under Kaine as governor to help balance the state budget. Jackson said he chose the backdrop to “highlight Kaine’s horrendous fiscal record as governor.”
This morning, Jackson is also expected to stop by the Kaine campaign’s headquarters to speak with staff and deliver a letter. In recent days, he has accused Kaine of using women as “pawns in the Democrat war on business” and “deceiving senior citizens for political gain.”
Radtke has continued to make the case that she is a better alternative than Allen, whom she calls a “career politician,” attacking his record as a U.S. Senator.
Marshall, meanwhile, has remained focused on social issues and his accomplishments as a delegate, claiming he has gotten the best of Kaine on a variety of policy issues over the years.