With 15 days to go before election day, the Ward 1 D.C. Council race is literally getting ugly. Councilmember Jim Graham claims that challenger Brianne Nadeau‘s campaign used Photoshop in a recent mailer to make him look worse.

In a mailing (above), Nadeau’s campaign claims that Graham’s dealings, including one that lead to a reprimand from his Council colleagues, are hurting the ward. But Graham claims Nadeau is using more than just words to make her case. “I have half my teeth and they’ve made my face look scruffy,” Graham says of his photo in the mailer.

Graham took his complaints to TV this morning for a debate on NewsChannel 8 with Nadeau. Waving a copy of the mailer, Graham accused his opponent of darkening out his teeth.

“To my knowledge, we did not alter that photo,” Nadeau said.

“To my knowledge you did alter it,” Graham shot back. “All these scruffy cheeks and everything.”

Original photo

But not so, says Nadeau spokesman Tom Fazzini. Rather than Photoshopping out teeth, Fazzini says the campaign’s designer made the original image (at left) black and white, then used a newspaperlike filter on the photo.

Photo courtesy Jim Graham, Brianne Nadeau campaign