Lt. Gov. hopeful Dan Patrick campaigns in Tyler, speaks out about attack ads

Lt. Gov. hopeful Dan Patrick campaigns in Tyler, speaks out about attack ads

Lieutenant governor candidate, Senator Dan Patrick, made a stop in Tyler Thursday night ahead of next week's runoff election. He's in the middle of what's become a heated race against incumbent David Dewhurst. 

Patrick was hospitalized briefly in the 80s for exhaustion and depression -- information that was recently made public when his personal medical records were released to the media.

Land Commissioner and Dewhurst supporter, Jerry Patterson, has admitted to releasing the documents, but Patrick thinks Dewhurst is behind the leak -- a claim Dewhurst adamantly denies.

Patrick says through his faith and family he's been able to overcome depression, and wants to focus on the important issues in this race.

"When you go back to 30 and literally 40 years -- I'm now in my 60s -- they actually attacked me for something I did at 22, that I actually didn't do, but I mean that's pretty desperate," Patrick said. 

Patrick accuses Dewhurst of spending close to $8 million on mudslinging attack ads -- targeting Patrick for everything from filing bankruptcy to not paying taxes.

"This has been the dirtiest campaign probably anyone has ever seen -- not from our side, because there's not a viewer who can say 'I saw Dan attack David Dewhurst.' We haven't. I don't believe in that kind of campaigning," Patrick said.

In a statement to CBS19 today, Dewhurst defends the ads, saying:

"Once again, Dan Patrick has been trying to distract Texas voters from the issues that matter to Texans like securing the border, improving our public schools and fighting the Obama Administration's meddling ways. My ads have merely repeated facts from the public record and nothing more, while his have been filled with attacks proven false upon closer examination. I hope Texas voters will see through his smoke screen to my record of cutting taxes, shrinking government -- helping create the nation's strongest economic climate."

Patrick says it's time to focus on the big issues, like border security, education, property taxes and water supplies. Dewhurst has said the same.
 
"People want to know, what are you going to do, what do you stand for, who are you? Not how bad you say the other guy is," Patrick said. "So, it's pretty desperate when you're at that point."

In the March primary, Patrick got 41 percent of the votes to Dewhurst's 28.

Dewhurst has said he believes he's closing the gap, but political analysts don't believe the information about Patrick's mental health will hurt him.  

Early voting wraps up tomorrow and election day is next Tuesday, May 27. Whoever wins the nomination will go up against democrat Leticia Van De Putte in the November election.


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