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New Brown ad features Whitman as Pinocchio

September 14, 2010 |  1:19 pm

Jerry Brown waited until Labor Day weekend to formally launch his campaign for governor, and seemed to try to run a campaign above the fray. Brown said he wanted a positive, open discussion with Californians about their future.

That was so last week. Less than two weeks after Brown's official campaign kick-off, Brown unveiled two new television ads that feature his Republican opponent, Meg Whitman, as Pinocchio. Call it a sign of things to come.

Brown campaign manger Steven Glazer unveiled the ad at a Sacramento press conference Tuesday. Glazer said the Whitman campaign was forging ahead, "truth be damned," and said the new ads amount to political self-defense.

"We are not going to be pushed around like one of her EBay employees," Glazer said, a backhanded reference to an earlier altercation between Whitman and one of her employees while Whitman was EBay CEO.

Glazer said they were going negative reluctantly. "We don't want to do it," he said. "We hope voters will recognize we're trying to defend ourselves."

"Jerry Brown is doing exactly what a 40-year career politician would do: Run from his real record and launch character attacks," said Whitman spokeswoman Andrea Jones-Rivera  "His record is undisputed. Jerry Brown left California in a fiscal disaster with record unemployment and turned a $6-billion surplus into a $1-billion deficit."

You can watch one of the ads below.

--Anthony York in Sacramento