Friday, August 20, 2004

In all fairness, let's have some fairness - Kerry files FEC complaint against critical veterans group: "It was during a campaign stop Thursday that Kerry, a highly decorated Vietnam veteran, said the fact that Bush won't denounce the ads 'tells you everything you need to know -- he wants them to do his dirty work.'"

OK, when John Kerry denounces, he'll have a right to talk.

UPDATE [8/20/2004 - 17:58]: (Via InstaPundit) Mickey Kaus asks "How would the press have reacted if the Bush campaign had called on the distributor of Michael Moore's Fahrenheit 9/11 to 'withdraw' the film."


Jeff said...

Well, conservative groups did attempt to prevent ads for Fahrenheit 9/11 from airing on the grounds that they violated campaign finance regulations, claims that were unanimously dismissed by the FEC.

I think Bush would gain credibility by heeding John McCain's advice and condemning the ads since (1) Bush can't compete with Kerry on the Vietnam issue anyway and (2) He would at least be able to remove the perception that he's engaging in negative campaigning.

RFTR said...

Unfortunately, Jeff, there are a few things wrong with that.

1) it was not Bush who was calling for the removal of Moore's adds, so the situations are not analogous.

2) Bush is not trying to compete with Kerry on Vietnam, he is simply allowing a group who disagrees with Kerry's fictitious claims regarding his own record to voice those views.

3) A perception of negative campaigning does not hurt a candidate, generally.

Anonymous said...

Bush doesn't need to compete with Kerry on the military service issue. Kerry claims that his 4 months in 'Nam will make him a better commander in chief, while Bush has had 4 years to show his commander in chief stuff. If I were Bush, I wouldn't say a thing, positive or negative, about the ads.

La Shawn

Jeff said...

Quoting Brian: OK, when John Kerry denounces, he'll have a right to talk.

Didn't Kerry denounce ads from Move On that attacked Bush's record in the National Guard? If he hadn't, conservatives would be voicing the same criticisms that liberals are currently lodging against Bush for failing to condemn the smear campaign of the swift boat vets. Seems like a troubling double standard to me.