In new TV ad, slain officer’s family endorses Cuccinelli

Ken Cuccinelli at Sweet Frog

By Mark Preston, CNN Political Director

(CNN) — The widow and daughter of a Virginia police officer killed in the line of duty endorse Ken Cuccinelli for governor in a new television commercial that will start running throughout the commonwealth on Monday, a Cuccinelli campaign adviser tells CNN.

Cuccinelli’s first TV ad since accepting the Republican Party’s gubernatorial nomination Saturday doesn’t talk about his plan to fix the economy or lower taxes, but rather it seeks to paint him as a compassionate individual who will never leave your side.

“I honestly don’t know how I survived it,” Sue Garbarino says about the murder of her husband, Fairfax County Police Officer Michael Garbarino, in May 2006. “I just needed to be there for my girls. Every time I was in the hospital, I would see Ken Cuccinelli. I will never forget that.”

“He was a figure that I came to expect to be there every day at the hospital,” says Natalie Garbarino, the officer’s daughter. “Ken Cuccinelli really cared about us, and that meant a lot to me.”

Two police officers, Garbarino and Det. Vicky Armel, were killed in the parking lot of their police station by a gunman, who was also shot dead.

At the time, Cuccinelli was a state senator who had met Officer Garbarino in the course of his work. The minute-long ad shows video of Garbarino’s funeral, including Cuccinelli’s remarks at the service.

The Cuccinelli campaign adviser would not specify how big the ad buy was, only saying that it was “significant.”

Cuccinelli will face Democratic nominee Terry McAuliffe in November.

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