Controversy over use of image of flag draped coffins in campaign - WFMJ.com News weather sports for Youngstown-Warren Ohio

Controversy over use of image of flag draped coffins in campaign ad

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YOUNGSTOWN, Ohio -

A recent campaign ad by Senator Rob Portman has struck a nerve with some Democratic politicians who are veterans. At issue is the image of flag draped coffins to illustrate Ted Strickland's support of the Iran Nuclear Deal. 

In the ad, Portman's campaign uses an image of flag draped coffins with a quote from the Military Times linking Iran to the deaths of 500 US troops in Iraq and Afghanistan.

"To suggest that those men and women now who returned home in flag draped coffins should be postured and used for  political posturing is disheartening and it's vulgar and it needs to stop on both sides," said Former Democratic Congressman and current 757th Airlift Squadron Commander John Boccieri.

Boccieri is one of a couple of Democratic veterans who are quoted in a press release from Strickland's supporters- the Ohio Democratic Party.

Boccieri is also in the running for former State Representative Ron Gerberry's seat.

"Even if I weren't in the political discussion right now, I would be speaking out against this. I feel that strongly," Boccieri said.

In response, Portman's campaign is sticking to the main message of the ad which is why Portman disagrees with the Iran deal.

State Senator Frank LaRose, a veteran on Portman's team who was a Green Beret,  said "Ted Strickland is siding with President Obama over the people of Ohio in supporting a bad deal that endangers America and our greatest ally in the Middle East. "

Boccieri is asking for an apology to veterans groups and for the ad to be discontinued. Not only is the Portman campaign not changing the ad, they're doubling their ad buy. 

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