The Democrat running for north-central Indiana's congressional seat is using another advertisement to highlight his military service and criticize his Republican opponent's record.
Brendan Mullen, a Democrat from Granger, criticizes Republican Jackie Walorski in the new ad for voting against a bill when she was a state representative that required insurers in Indiana to cover "medically necessary" prosthetics and orthotic devices.
The piece suggests Walorski's vote was against veterans who would need such devices after a service-related injury, but her campaign manager said Mullen is mischaracterizing the legislation.
Sam Alameda, a Marine Corps veteran from Mishawaka, narrates the ad, which begins with an image of a building exploding next to U.S. soldiers in Iraq.
"This is what we were up against," Alameda says.
"Thousands of veterans are coming home with critical injuries," he says, "but Jackie Walorski voted against requiring insurance companies to cover prosthetic devices that could benefit wounded veterans."
Alameda then goes on to describe how Mullen attended the U.S. Military Academy and served five years in the Army, including in Iraq, after graduation.
The measure referenced in the ad, House Bill 1140 from the Indiana General Assembly's 2008 session, passed both the House of Representatives and the Senate, and was enacted into law. The House voted 72-25 in favor of it, and Walorski cast one of the votes against it.
But Walorski's campaign manager, Brendon DelToro, said H.B. 1140 didn't affect veterans, whose health care is covered through the U.S. Department of Veterans Affairs.
"Jackie has been on the record multiple times talking about the importance of protecting veterans and providing the medical support and services they need, from education to small business tax credits," DelToro wrote in an e-mail. "Jackie has co-sponsored and voted for numerous bills in the legislature to benefit veterans and their families, and these attempts to distort her record are baseless."
DelToro's e-mail included a statement from Indiana Rep. Bill Davis, a Portland Republican who also said the bill referenced in the ad didn't involve veterans.
Mullen's campaign manager, Andy Reynolds, said the VA should cover all of a veteran's service-related injuries, but that isn't always the case.
"Had this bill not passed, if Jackie were voting in the majority instead of a small minority, there certainly would have been consequences for vets and all Hoosiers who need prosthetic devices, which are prohibitively expensive without insurance coverage," Reynolds said.
Staff writer Kevin Allen: