The Herald-Leader will fact-check statements made by candidates and their surrogates leading up to the Nov. 8 election.
The statement: "These ads attacking Steve Beshear are not just misleading, they are in clear violation of Kentucky law, and the court ordered them off the air as an illegal attempt to influence the election and help David Williams."
— Gov. Steve Beshear's re-election campaign, in a television commercial that started airing Thursday
The ruling: Mostly false
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The facts: Beshear's new TV ad misleadingly implies that an outside political group's commercials were taken off the air because their content was illegal.
Franklin Circuit Judge Thomas Wingate did issue a restraining order early last week that barred Restoring America, the group behind the ads, from airing them in Kentucky, but his ruling had nothing to do with their content.
Wingate issued the order after finding that the group did not disclose the names of its donors as required under Kentucky's campaign finance law. The Kentucky Democratic Party had requested the ruling.
Speaking of Restoring America's lack of disclosure, Wingate said in his order that "such clear violation of statutory law constitutes immediate and irreparable injury."
On Thursday, the judge lifted his restraining order after the group disclosed that its sole donor was Terry Stephens, the father-in-law of David Williams, the Republican candidate for governor. Stephens had contributed $1.365 million to Restoring American Inc., which originally was listed as Restoring America's sole donor.
The ads were back on TV stations across the state by Thursday evening.
Jack Brammer firstname.lastname@example.org