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Moran and Tiahrt trade bank shots at each other in Senate campaign

TiahrtMoranThe time for the happy-chat “getting to know you” campaign ads appears to be coming to a close in the battle for the Republican senatorial nomination.

While it’s not exactly down and dirty, Reps. Todd Tiahrt, R-Goddard, and Jerry Moran, R-Hays, do deal each other a couple of glancing blows in their latest advertisements.

In a new TV spot, the Moran campaign offers the following observation: “For a lot of congressmen, weekends mean lavish dinners with friendly lobbyists. For Jerry Moran, it means coming home to Kansas.”The ad continues: “Kansas instead of Washington. Now the food might not be as fancy, but the company is a whole lot better.”

The ad doesn’t mention Tiahrt by name, but given that there are no other congressmen in the race — and the fact the Moran campaign has tried all along to hang the Washington insider tag on Tiahrt — the implication is pretty clear.On Tiahrt’s part, a new radio ad features “Focus on the Family” founder James Dobson, a prominent Christian conservative leader, hailing Tiahrt for his opposition to abortion and gay marriage.

“Todd consistently fights these important battles when others too often choose to stand on the sidelines,” Dobson said. “He not only votes the right way, but he helps lead the fight.”

Again, no mention of the opponent by name, but Dobson’s comments dovetail with a recurring Tiahrt campaign theme.

While Moran’s and Tiahrt’s voting records are pretty solidly conservative GOP, the Tiahrt campaign has consistently attempted to paint Moran as less committed and less effective in promoting those views.