Reporter William March has covered state and national politics since 1994. Email
Reporter Mike Salinero has covered Hillsborough County government since 2007. Email
Reporter James L. Rosica covers state government from the Tribune's Tallahassee bureau. Email
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Mack says comparision to Charlie Sheen offensive
Posted Feb 23, 2012 by William March
Updated Feb 23, 2012 at 03:55 PM
Connie Mack’s U.S. Senate campaign says GOP primary opponent George LeMieux’s description of Mack as “the Charlie Sheen of Florida politics” is offensive and trivializes the problems and suffering of drug addiction.
“How sad and desperate a candidate must be to resort to political attacks that do nothing more than mock the tragedy of drug and alcohol addiction,” said Mack campaign manager Jeff Cohen in a letter to supporters Thursday. “But that’s exactly what George LeMieux did when he injected Charlie Sheen into the Senate campaign yesterday.”
“His antics were offensive and demeaning to every person who knows all too well the pain of addiction and the effect it has on individuals and their families, as well as all those organization who do so much to help them,” Cohen wrote.
In a published letter to LeMieux, meanwhile, Cohen called Lemieux’s comment “offensive and outrageous.”
He said Mack, his parents and his wife, Rep. Mary Bono of California, “have been leaders in standing up against the rising use of drugs among our citizens.”
“I know you believe it was cute (albeit juvenile) to bring in Charlie Sheen,” but, “your embarrassing campaign has gone beyond slinging mud to rapidly sinking into quicksand,” he wrote.
LeMieux made the comment in a news conference Wednesday discussing Mack’s history of fights and legal and financial problems.
In 2009, Bono and her son made news with stories about how, with her help, he overcame a severe oxycodone addiction.