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In campaign ad, McCrory calls out Budd on Putin, sanctions

Former North Carolina Gov. Pat McCrory is seen in a 2020 photo.
Gerry Broome
/
AP
Former North Carolina Gov. Pat McCrory is seen in a 2020 photo.

U.S. Senate candidate Pat McCrory wants to make Russia’s invasion of Ukraine a pivotal issue in the Republican primary in a television ad criticizing rival Ted Budd. McCrory's campaign began running a commercial on Wednesday accusing the congressman of being soft on President Vladimir Putin and Russian sanctions. The ad marks the first in the race for the former governor. The commercial calls out Budd for calling Putin a “very intelligent actor” in a TV interview. Budd also called Putin “evil” and an “international thug.” A Budd campaign adviser defended the congressman's comments. Fourteen Republicans are seeking the party's nomination in the May 17 primary.