House candidates deny part in flyer about Darby

Published 4:52 pm Wednesday, July 21, 2010

Both of David Darby’s opponents in the District 92 race for House of Representatives said Monday their campaigns are not responsible for a flyer circulated in recent days linking Darby, a Democrat, to President Barack Obama, also a Democrat.

Darby is seeking the seat left vacant by the retirement of House Speaker Seth Hammett. The district includes part of Escambia County.

The flyer features an image of Obama’s face that has been altered to include a skull cap. Over the cap and his face are the words “Vote for David Darby.” Surrounding the image are phrases like “Black Panthers,” “green,” “pro-gay,” “pro-illigals (stet),” “pro-choice,” “anti-gun,” and “high tax.”

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Darby received the first flyer from a supporter last Tuesday, the same day that primary runoff elections were held in Alabama.

At first, he said, it appeared the flyers were targeted to people who have Darby campaign signs in their yards. However, in the past week, he said, a number of people who live in Bellwood and Green Acres in Andalusia have reported finding the flyers rolled up and thrown in their driveways, often near their newspapers.

Darby, who is seeking public office for the first time, said he expected to be attacked with negative ads, but didn’t think it would happen this early.

“I’m really disappointed this has started so soon,” Darby, who is an Andalusia pharmacist, said. “I plan on running a clean campaign and hope both of my opponents do the same and call on their supporters to do likewise.”

Darby’s Republican opponent, Mike Jones Jr., said he just found out about the flyers on Friday.

“I don’t know where they’re coming from – they’re definitely not coming from us,” Jones said. “I pledged to have a clean campaign and my intention is to do just that.”

Jones said he and Darby agreed early on not to run negative ads against each other.

“I plan to honor that commitment through Nov. 2,” Jones said.

Don Cotton, who is seeking the office as an independent, also denied that the flyers came from his camp, saying that his campaign was not responsible “in any shape, form or fashion.” He said he also would adopt a “no negative attack” policy.

“The personal attacks aimed at (Darby) are inexcusable,” Cotton said.

Darby, who supported Obama in 2008, said he doesn’t agree with everything the president has done.

“I don’t know Barack Obama or Nancy Pelosi,” Darby said. “I do know some people in Covington County who are hurting and need a job and that’s who I care about.

“Some things (Obama’s) done I agree with and some I disagree with,” Darby said.