Sen. Mark Pryor (D-AR) defended Wednesday his decision to invoke panic over the Ebola virus in a TV spot attacking opponent Rep. Tom Cotton.
“I wouldn’t say it’s contributing to the hysteria,” Pryor said at a press conference at his campaign headquarters in Little Rock, Arkansas News reported.
“It’s something that people care about, they’re paying attention to,” he added. “And the two of us have a voting record on this, and our voting record is in sharp contrast, so I think it’s fair game.”
Pryor’s TV ad, full of news reports and grainy footage of Ebola coverage in Africa, slammed Cotton for voting against the Pandemic and All-Hazards Preparedness Reauthorization Act of 2013.
The Cotton camp called the ad “desperate.”
“How senatorial is it to lie to Arkansans in order to whip up fear about a deadly African virus in order to win a few votes?” the Republican’s campaign said in a statement, according to Arkansas News.
Cotton’s team argued that while its candidate did initially vote against the bill, he voted in favor of a later version once a certain provision had been removed, a detail unmentioned in the Pryor ad.