- The Washington Times - Wednesday, September 17, 2014

The D.C. Republican Party is wading into the city’s mayoral race despite the lack of a candidate in the contest, with officials criticizing the ads of one of the nominees.

The party issued a statement Wednesday demanding an apology from Muriel Bowser, the Democratic candidate, saying her ads claimed Republicans are engaging in “dirty tricks” in the race.

“As there is no Republican candidate running for Mayor, the District of Columbia Republican Party is not actively engaged in the Mayor’s race,” the GOP statement says. “Consequently, claims that the Republican Party is engaging in dirty tricks in the Mayor’s race is false.”

Two mayoral candidates, David A. Catania and Carol Schwartz, are independents who previous held seats on the D.C. Council as Republicans.

“This ad gives me an indication that she is only interested in serving one segment of Washington, D.C.,” DC GOP Chairman Ron Phillips said. “I understand her campaign is trying to make an innuendo reference to her opponents, but they didn’t do a very good job of it in this case.”

A spokesman for Ms. Bowser’s campaign could not be reached Wednesday for comment about the ad.

Campaigns for Ms. Bowser and Mr. Catania, both sitting council members, touted new radio ads running this week, The Washington Post reported. The ad in question was not among those featured.

Mr. Phillips said two DC GOP executives heard the ads on WMMJ Radio (FM 102.3) Wednesday morning.

The party is demanding an apology and asking the Bowser campaign to pull the ads from the air. Mr. Phillips said he hopes to be in contact with Ms. Bowser’s campaign Wednesday to discuss the ads and says if he is unable to get in contact, he plans to file a complaint with the D.C. Board of Elections.

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