The Karl Rove-backed political committee, American Crossroads, is out with a new $2 million ad buy in Florida attacking Democrat Bill Nelson for an agriculture exemption he had on 55 acres of property, that allowed him to avoid $43,000 in taxes.
The ad is parroting the same lines Republican challenger Connie Mack has used in his campaign and is the second ad by the group used to help prop up Mack's campaign.
“Bill Nelson’s decades as a career politician have taught him how to dodge paying hefty taxes and still make big profits for himself,” said Nate Hodson, American Crossroads director of state and regional media relations. “Floridians can’t afford another six years of Bill Nelson helping himself while he pushes higher taxes for everyone else.”
Nelson's campaign has said of the attacks: "The pastureland has been taxed as agricultural property for at least five decades or more going way back to when Nelson’s dad owned it. Nelson himself raised cows there. He sold them to pay his way through college. He’s kept the acreage as pastureland and it’s still used by a licensed cattleman to graze a small herd. Bill has paid the same property tax rate as everybody else on his house that adjoins the pastureland. And, he’s paid every dime of taxes owed on the pasture."
The Nelson campaign also accuses Mack of avoiding his property taxes because of two homestead exemption claims. Mack's campaign counters that this is not an issue. Mack owns only one home in Florida, in Fort Myers, and he has a homestead exemption on it.