Politics

Mayoral campaign ad for Sheila Jackson Lee provides wrong date for runoff election

The erroneous political advertisement aired over the weekend on multiple Houston TV stations. Jackson Lee is facing Texas Sen. John Whitmire is a runoff election scheduled for Saturday, Dec. 9.

Ranking Member Rep. Sheila Jackson Lee, D-Texas, speaks during a hearing of the House Judiciary subcommittee on Crime, Terrorism, Homeland Security, and Investigations, on Capitol Hill, in Washington, Tuesday, April 4, 2017. (AP Photo/Alex Brandon)
Alex Brandon/AP
Rep. Sheila Jackson Lee, D-Texas, speaks during a hearing of the House Judiciary subcommittee on Crime, Terrorism, Homeland Security, and Investigations, on Capitol Hill, in Washington, Tuesday, April 4, 2017.

A recent political advertisement for U.S. Rep. Sheila Jackson Lee, which aired on Houston television stations over the weekend, included the incorrect date for her mayoral runoff against Texas Sen. John Whitmire.

The 30-second spot ended with an image of Jackson Lee, the 73-year-old congresswoman and former Houston City Council member, flanked by her mayoral campaign logo and another graphic encouraging Houston residents to "vote on or before December 7th." But the runoff election is Saturday, which is Dec. 9, and the early voting period ends Tuesday, which is Dec. 5.

The erroneous ad debuted Saturday and aired on the local ABC, CBS and NBC affiliates, according to Angelica Luna-Kaufman, a spokesperson for Jackson Lee's campaign. She said the date mistake was made by a hired advertising agency and not by Jackson Lee's campaign staff.

Luna-Kaufman also said the mistake was brought to the campaign's attention on Saturday and "immediately corrected," with a revised version sent to the TV stations that day. The corrected ad did not start airing until Monday morning, she said.

"Unfortunately, the news stations continued to run it," Luna-Kaufman said of the erroneous version. "The stations did not switch it out (until Monday). They had the changed copy."

Sue Davis, a spokesperson for Whitmire's campaign, said Monday it did not have a comment about the date snafu in the Jackson Lee ad.

Jackson Lee is trying to rally support after the 74-year-old Whitmire, a fellow Democrat, was the leading vote-getter among 17 candidates in the Nov. 7 general election. He received about 43% of the vote compared to about 35% for Jackson Lee.

The two longtime politicians are vying to succeed Houston Mayor Sylvester Turner, whose second and final term ends at the end of this year.

Luna-Kaufman said she does not expect the ad mistake to have an effect on the runoff results or lead to any voters attempting to cast ballots on days the polls are closed.

"I don't think it'll have an impact," she said. "It has been well-publicized in general in Houston that this election is on Dec. 9."