Former Sen. George LeMieux (R-Fla.) called into question former state House Majority Leader Adam Hasner's (R-Fla.) record as a conservative Monday, mounting a new Senate campaign website that claims Hasner is a moderate in disguise.
The website, www.phonyconservative.com, shows a cartoon of Hasner wearing a jester's hat and calls for scrutiny of his record on issues ranging from abortion and human cloning to taxes and labor issues.
"Tallahassee career politician Adam Hasner’s masquerade ball continues," LeMieux's campaign writes on the website. "In this episode, the conservative mask Hasner wears when it comes to important issues like the sanctity of life, education reform, and reigning in big labor is uncovered."
The website may signal an attempt by LeMieux's campaign to deflect attention from a series of recent boosts to Hasner's candidacy. On Friday, the campaign announced the endorsement of the Family Research Council's Action PAC, the group led by Tony Perkins that supports politicians who espouse extremely socially conservative platforms. And a week earlier, Hasner won a straw poll in Florida with 34 percent; LeMieux came in third with 24 percent.
“Looks like losing to Adam by 10 points in the CPAC Florida straw poll has really gotten under George LeMieux’s skin," said Douglass Mayer, Hasner's communications director. "He spearheaded the false attacks against Marco Rubio for Charlie Crist and he is now using the same false attacks against Adam."
Hasner and LeMieux are competing with retired Army Col. Mike McCalister and businessman Craig Miller in the GOP primary to take on Sen. Bill Nelson (D-Fla.). Polling shows that Florida Republicans have yet to get behind a candidate. LeMieux came out on top in a Quinnipiac University poll released Sept. 22, but almost 3 in 5 voters hadn't made up their minds.