Monday, August 23, 2004

Spin those headlines

So the President came out today and made a statement about those horrible ads. Not just the ones from the Swift Boat Vets...but all those nasty 527 ads that have filled the airwaves over the past few months. Here's the transcript of his statement.

Of course, you won't know this judging from how it was written up by the various members of the MSM...

CRAWFORD, Texas
(CNN)
-- President Bush on Monday called for the so-called 527 groups to stop airing political ads, but he did not directly condemn commercials by the Swift Boat Veterans for Truth that have attacked Sen. John Kerry's war record.

What? He didn't single them out? The nerve!

Bush: Time To Sink Swift Boat Ads

WASHINGTON (CBS) President Bush on Monday denounced a television advertisement attacking John Kerry's war record and called for a halt to all such political ads by outside groups.

Ye gods! Talk about a misleading headline...he said no such thing, Bush was referring to ALL 527 ads. Of course, they don't bother to address the real quote until the third graph.

"That means that ad and every other ad," he said. "I think they're bad for the system."

But they ignore the "every other ad" part so that the headline can have more of the desired effect. MSNBC doesn't do much better with their piece:

Bush calls for halt to Swift Boat vets' ads
MSNBC staff and news service reports
CRAWFORD, Texas - President Bush says a veterans’ group should stop television ads criticizing John Kerry’s war record.The president's criticism of the ads by Swift Boat Veterans for the Truth came as Bush denounced all TV ads by outside groups attacking both Kerry and himself on Monday and called for a halt to all such political efforts.

Reuters adds their two cents with this:

Bush Says 'That Ad' Attacking Kerry Should Stop
By Adam Entous
CRAWFORD, Texas (Reuters) - Under pressure from Democrats and Republican Sen. John McCain, President Bush on Monday called for ads attacking John Kerry's record in Vietnam to be stopped along with others run by independent groups, and said Kerry should be proud of his war service.


"That ad," eh? Well, at least they included the other 527s in the lead. Rather nice of them. The AP is quite more even-handed with their story:

Bush Denounces Ads by Outside Groups
By PETE YOST, Associated Press Writer
CRAWFORD, Texas - President Bush on Monday denounced campaign commercials aired by outside groups, including an ad that accuses John Kerry of lying about his combat record in Vietnam.

But of course, later versions of the story contained this zinger of a quote from uber-attorney John Edwards:

Kerry's vice presidential running mate, Sen. John Edwards of North Carolina, said Bush's comments on Monday fell short of what was needed.
"The moment of truth came and went, and the president still couldn't bring himself to do the right thing," Edwards said. "Instead of hiding behind a front group, George Bush needs to take responsibility and demand that the ad come off the air."


What did you expect him to say? Demand? Are you calling for political censorship, John? How much you want to bet that the democrats would be howling like a little girl with a skinned knee if if he went after MoveOn or one of the other Bash-Bush groups like they wants him to with the Vets.

Meanwhile, over at Fox News:

Kerry, Bush in Political Firefight
WASHINGTON — President Bush said Monday that a veterans' group should stop airing television ads criticizing John Kerry's war record.
Bush said ads from Swift Boat Veterans for Truth, a 527 group named after its status in the tax code, should be pulled. The call from Bush could open him up to charges that the Bush-Cheney campaign is coordinating with an unregulated political organization.
I got news for you: Kerry or one of his minions are going to make this charge regardless of what the President does or says. So what is the response from the Vets?

Anti-Kerry vets won't pull attack ads
Washington, DC, Aug. 23 (UPI) -- Swift Boat Veterans for Truth will not pull television ads attacking John Kerry's service despite President Bush's wishes, sources said Monday. Sources close to the Swift Boat Veterans said the issue of Kerry's military service is too important to drop.
"It is not a Republican or Democratic issue. If John Kerry was a Republican, the Swift Boat Veterans for Truth would still run this ad."

And according to the Note, this isn't going away anytime soon:

KERRY TO HIT BUSH TUESDAY: Kerry to speak at Cooper Union in New York City about how Bush is pulling a page out of the "Republican smear playbook" because he has nothing else to talk about, Stephanie Cutter tells ABC News' Dan Harris...

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