In an unusual campaign move, U.S. Rep. Tom Feeney will use a new television ad to apologize for his role in the Jack Abramoff corruption scandal.
Set to air Tuesday, the 30-second spot features Feeney alone at a kitchen telling viewers that he made a "rookie mistake" by taking a 2003 golfing trip to Scotland that was paid for Abramoff, whom he calls a corrupt lobbyist."I embarrassed myself, I embarrassed you and for that, I'm very sorry," said Feeney, holding a black coffee mug as soft music plays in the background.
Here's the full script:
"Five years ago, when I was first elected to Congress I was invited on trip to Scotland. I found out later that it was paid for by a corrupt lobbyist. It was a rookie mistake and I did everything I could to make it right. I reported it to the ethics committee and I paid the money back. I embarrassed myself, I embarrassed you and for that, I'm very sorry. I'm Tom Feeney and I approve this message because public service means about being honest, even when you make a mistake."
You don't usually see incumbents in a tough election issue mea culpas like this. (Note also that he's only apologizing years after the offending incident.) In fact, this move had shades of Don Sherwood all over it. Will voters be in a forgiving mood this November? I doubt it.