RGA ad attacking Burke begins airing early

Mary Burke (D), left, and Scott Walker (R)
Mary Burke (D), left, and Scott Walker (R)

GREEN BAY- The 2014 governor's race is already seeing its first state-wide ads, seemingly earlier than other years.

This third-party ad from the Republican Governors Association targets Democratic Candidate for Governor Mary Burke.

She's poised as the front-runner to challenge Republican Governor Scott Walker if they both get their party's nomination this fall.

The ad, which goes after Burke's record as Commerce Secretary and the CEO of Trek Bicycles, was released Sunday. It was supposed to come out Wednesday of this week. The R-G-A says it was released early simply because it was finished early.

Walker Monday told FOX 11 the early release really doesn't matter to him.

"I don't run the ads. That's up to them. We learned about them literally when you all did in the media. I don't have any role in when they come out. Our campaign doesn't officially kick off until the spring, after we've gotten through the legislative session,” said Walker.

A spokesperson for the Burke campaign says the ads are full of half-truths.

“The jobs claim was rated mostly false by Politifact. The budget claim, Mary Burke left her office more than 600 days before that budget became law. The audit that the referenced covered time before Burke was Secretary of Commerce," said Joe Zepecki, spokesperson for Burke for Wisconsin.

Political science professor Scott Furlong says he can't remember the claws coming out this early in the year for a governor's race.

“Typically you'd want to wait until after the primaries are done to go after one person but at this point it looks like it's just going to be Mary Burke for the democrats so they can go and spend that money and my guess is they have that money to spend,” said Furlong.

Furlong expects the third-party ads, which means they do not come from the candidates' campaigns, this early could turn into a trend.

Watch the ad: