Candidates spar over ad

Published 11:09 pm Friday, April 27, 2012

A candidate for the N.C. House of Representatives said one of his opponents has misrepresented his opinion on the issue of abortion rights for women in recent advertisements appearing in the Washington Daily News.

Jeremy D. Adams of Nags Head, seeking to be the Republican nominee for the 6th District seat in the N.C. House of Representatives, said that a recent advertisement by one of his GOP primary opponents, Mattie Lawson, a Kill Devil Hills resident, is a “blatant misrepresentation” of his position on abortion.

“I’m pro-life,” Adams said in an interview earlier this week. “As a combat veteran, I know all life is priceless.”

“This blatant misrepresentation does not really meet the standards of the Republican Party in North Carolina,” he said.

The ad, which appeared in the April 22 edition of the Daily News, notes that Lawson is a “35 year Conservative Activist” while Adams is “Pro-Abortion.”

Lawson said she would replace the advertisement, which was scheduled to run in future editions of the newspaper, with other ads.

Both candidates said the confusion originated with an article that profiled candidates in the 6th District race. The article was published on the Internet at the Carolina Journal Online, a media presence of the John Locke Foundation.

In the article, the reporter wrote, “Adams believes abortion is between an individual, her family, and their God. He said government power to regulate marriage, not same-sex unions, is the more appropriate area for discussion.”

Adams said the reporter misinterpreted his comments, which were directed at the marriage amendment now before voters, not abortion rights.

Since the article first appeared, the Carolina Journal Online added a note at the end of the article indicating that Adams is a pro-life Christian.

Adams said that Lawson knew of the apparent error in the report before the advertisement appeared, but Lawson told the newspaper that she learned of the discrepancy only afterwards.

“At the time I placed the ad, I was basing it on the Carolina Journal interview,” she said, adding that she is “happy to replace it.”

When asked if there were instances when either candidate would approve of a woman ending a pregnancy with an abortion, both said there would be few circumstances when an abortion is warranted.

Adams said that in “life-saving situations” when a doctor had to choose between saving one of two lives, he would approve of a woman having an abortion.

Lawson agreed.

“If the life of the mother was somehow threatened … that it was in the case of the life of the mother, not the health of the mother,” she said.

Adams, Lawson and former state Rep. Arthur Williams of Washington are vying for the Republican nomination for the 6th District seat. The winner of the primary election will face Democrat Paul Tine of Kitty Hawk in the November general election.

The district includes all or parts of Beaufort, Dare, Hyde and Washington counties.