Political campaigns are often woven with half-truths, mistruths and flat out lies. This year’s have been no different, and occurrences are not just playing out on the national stage. A recent pair of television commercials in Maine go after Angus King, a former Maine governor and current Independent candidate for the U.S. Senate, for allegedly making “millions” off of a “sweetheart deal” from the federal government for the Record Hill wind power project in the state.

One ad, paid for by the National Republican Senatorial Committee, contained several contested claims relating to the Record Hill project, such as that King’s political connections allowed his company to receive a loan that he ended up profiting from. That ad was swapped out for another NRSC spot that features an assortment of citizens (who just happen to be members of an anti-wind group) complaining about how the turbines ruin their view. King’s campaign manager called on television stations to stop running both commercials, which he says constitute “deceptive advertising.”

So did King profit off wind power? Yes, but not to the extent claimed in the commercial. Until last year, King and his business partner held a 10 percent stake in the 22-turbine Roxbury project. But according to the independent candidate, he only earned $212,000 off the deal, not the “millions” claimed in the ad.

Was there a sweetheart government deal? The project did receive a $120 million government-backed loan, but it came through seven months after King sold his share in the project.

The advertisements, however, conveniently forget to mention that the Record Hill project paid the town of Roxbury $610,000 in taxes, bringing residential property taxes down significantly. The River Valley Sun Journal found that before the turbines residents paid $16.86 per $1,000 of property value. That number has dropped to $6.93.

After reaching out to television stations airing the current spot, King campaign manager Kay Rand said the campaign will take legal action if the ad continues ti air. Brian Walsh, a spokesman for the National Republican Senatorial Committee said that his organization stands behind both ads. It’s unclear whether the stations will acquiesce to King’s demands, but in the past stations have pulled commercials found to be misleading. The decision is up to each individual channel.

For its part, the King campaign is also fighting back with its own commercial, starring a man named “Rolly” who sits with the turbines behind him and says, “My taxes went down and I can hunt here. What more could I want?”

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