Dark money group targets Brown over previous domestic violence claim

Dark money group targets Brown over previous domestic violence claim
© Greg Nash

A dark money PAC in Ohio appears to be behind a new website that is attempting to use the #MeToo movement to target Sen. Sherrod BrownSherrod Campbell BrownThe Hill's Morning Report - A raucous debate on race ends with Trump admonishment On The Money: Senators unload on Facebook cryptocurrency | Tech giants on defensive at antitrust hearing | Democrats ask Labor Department to investigate Amazon warehouses Hillicon Valley: Senators unload on Facebook cryptocurrency plan | Trump vows to 'take a look' at Google's ties to China | Google denies working with China's military | Tech execs on defensive at antitrust hearing | Bill would bar business with Huawei MORE (D) over accusations of domestic violence that came up in his 1986 divorce. 

The website www.metooohio.com appears to have ties to a Republican firm that has done work for Brown's opponent in the November election, Rep. Jim RenacciJames (Jim) B. RenacciMedicare for All won't deliver what Democrats promise GOP rep: If Mueller had found collusion, 'investigation would have wrapped up very quickly' House Ethics Committee extends probe into Renacci MORE (R).

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The website has a minute-long video that references Brown's divorce proceedings from 1986 when his then-wife, Larke Recchie, alleged that Brown would become physically threatening and would sometimes shove or push her, Cleveland.com reported.

"Sherrod Brown is facing his own Me Too moment from his past," a narrator reads on the site's advertisement against Brown. "These court records show sworn evidence that Brown's ex-wife accused him of abusing her."

The website asks viewers to call Congress and demand that Brown resign. 

Recchie, now a supporter of Brown, called the video “disgusting” and said that Brown is a “great father.” She has previously said of the divorce proceedings that, “Divorce can often be an unfriendly ordeal, and ours was no exception. There was a lot of hurt on both sides, and it led only to angry words.”

"This isn't the first time someone has gone after my family to score cheap political points," she said in a statement Thursday, according to the website. 

"I'm dismayed that Congressman Renacci would do something this shameless, despite the fact that I've already addressed this matter. I was proud to support Sherrod in 2006 and 2012 — just as I am this time around. Anyone who suggests he is not an honorable man is just wrong," Recchie continued.

The issue has been a frequent target of Brown opponents during his political career.

Renacci denied involvement in the advertisement when contacted by Cleveland.com, but amplified the ad's contents in a statement.

"Violence against women in any form is not acceptable and has no place in our society," Renacci said. "Sherrod Brown's well-documented history of domestic violence is deeply troubling. Ohioans deserve to know all the facts, and judge his fitness for public office for themselves."

Brown is facing a reelection fight against Renacci in November. President TrumpDonald John TrumpLiz Cheney: 'Send her back' chant 'inappropriate' but not about race, gender Booker: Trump is 'worse than a racist' Top Democrat insists country hasn't moved on from Mueller MORE won Ohio by more than 8 points in 2016, but Brown seems to be in a good position to retain his seat.

A RealClearPolitics analysis shows Brown with a double-digit polling advantage over Renacci.

 

 

The PAC, named "Me Too Ohio," was created earlier this month by a Republican political consultant based in Washington, D.C., according to Cleveland.com. In a statement, the Majority Strategies firm told the website it was working with Me Too Ohio "with all of the necessary legal firewalls in place."