WASHINGTON -- When millions of people tune in for Monday night's presidential debate, those in Florida's newly drawn 18th District -- where the debate is taking place -- will also see a new TV ad attacking Rep. Allen West (R-Fla.) for wanting to upend Medicare.
The 30-second spot by the Democratic Congressional Campaign Committee hits West for not telling the truth about his support for the House Republican budget proposed by Rep. Paul Ryan, which would privatize Medicare. West is running in the redrawn congressional district, which is home to many senior citizens.
"What if Allen West told the truth in his TV ads?" asks a narrator, as a handful of people take turns standing behind a cardboard cutout of a large TV and pretending to be West. A sign attached to the TV reads, "A True Ad From Allen West."
"I'm Allen West and I voted for Paul Ryan's budget plan," says an elderly woman.
"It ends guaranteed Medicare benefits," says a man.
"Seniors have to negotiate with insurance companies," says another man. "And pay thousands more out of pocket," adds the older woman.
A West campaign spokesman did not immediately respond to a request for comment.
West, a Tea Party favorite, is locked in a brutal race with Democratic newcomer Patrick Murphy. They had their first and only formal debate last week, during which West denied that he had ever voted for the $716 billion cut to Medicare that, in fact, he voted for as part of Ryan's budget.