ALBUQUERQUE (KRQE) - The ads both have a similar message.
The Public Regulation Commission doesn't need another Jerome Block Jr. , the commissioner who resigned in disgrace in 2011 after pleading guilty to embezzlement charges.
But make no mistake, Democrat Karen Montoya and Republican Chris Ocksrider are not on the same side.
The two are battling for the PRC's District 1 seat, which covers Albuquerque.
In an attempt to paint the other as the next Block Jr., both have gone negative.
A couple of weeks ago, Ocksrider, a local attorney, hit Montoya with an ad including this line:
"An FBI investigation is Karen Montoya's latest controversy to be reported in the Albuquerque Journal, in addition to her questionable firings and lawsuits."
That ad refers to the FBI looking to talk to Montoya, currently Bernalillo County Assessor, this past spring over her office's relationship with state Sen. Tim Eichenberg. It's unclear if there's a formal investigation underway or not.
In response, Montoya tried to throw a political haymaker at Ocksrider Thursday in a new TV ad.
"Forty-seven years old, never married, a known gambler, is that why he doesn't own any property? His home? Owned by his mother. Touted as one of Albuquerque's hot singles... Was gambling the real reason he left a nonprofit after discrepancies were discovered?"
The ad provides few specific direct allegations, but it appears the nonprofit referred to in the ad is the St. Martin's Hospitality Center, an Albuquerque homeless shelter. Ocksrider was a board member for the group for six years.
Neither Ocksrider nor his campaign responded to a request for an interview. However, a statement released on Ocksrider's campaign website called the attack a "smear."
" St. Martin's Hospitality Center has no knowledge of any unethical or illegal behaviors regarding Mr. Christopher Ocksrider's service to our organization," said a statement attributed by Ocksrider's campaign to Rev. Rusty Smith, executive director for St. Martin's. " Members of the Board of Directors do not have access to funds of our organization."
" Mr. Ocksrider left our Board on good terms, and we appreciate his six years of service."
News 13 reached Montoya by phone Friday afternoon. After she initially agreed to an interview, a campaign staffer pulled the plug and said the candidate was simply too busy.