Mayoral campaign ads civil for now

The Civility Project says it will get ugly

SAN DIEGO - It is considered a report card of sorts. A local group called The Civility Project grades political candidates on their TV ads. This time, we examine how San Diego mayoral candidates Kevin Faulconer and David Alvarez did in their first round of ads since the primary.

The countdown is on for the special mayoral election and the political TV ads are in full force. So far, they have been tame with no major attacks from either side.

"For these particular ads that we looked at, I think they both did a pretty good job in terms of getting the message out and getting it out in a positive way," said Jeff Marston, a former state assemblyman.

Together with long-time 10News political reporter John Beatty, they are part of The Civility Project, which grades the accuracy, tone and fairness of political ads.

They said San Diego politicians seem to have gotten the message that people are turned off by negative attack ads.

The jabs at opponents, at least for now, have been subtle. Marston said to not expect the civility to last much longer, especially now that the latest 10News/U-T San Diego scientific poll released Sunday revealed that Faulconer has taken a commanding 16 point lead over Alvarez.

On Sunday, an independent expenditure – in this case, a labor union – released a new commercial supporting Alvarez which goes after Faulconer for having a lengthy list of corporate supporters. While not a major personal attack, political experts said it is only a matter of time.

Even so, Marston and Beatty gave both candidates an "A" for their ad's accuracy, relevancy and fairness.

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