Another bogus ad


Geraldine Sealey
May 26, 2004 1:35AM (UTC)

"John Kerry. Playing politics with national security" intones the announcer in that frightening, menacing quality voice-over people reserve for ads meant to scare the pants off everyone. But who is really playing politics with national security? By releasing another bogus ad distorting John Kerry's record and positions today, George W. Bush is.

Here's latest offering from the ad masterminds over at Bush-Cheney '04, called "Patriot Act":

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"President Bush signed the Patriot Act giving law enforcement vital tools to fight terrorism. John Kerry? He voted for the Patriot Act, but pressured by fellow liberals, he's changed his position. While wire taps, subpoena powers and surveillances are routinely used against drug dealers and organized crime, Kerry would now repeal the Patriot Act's use of these tools against terrorists."

Here's what FactCheck.org has to say about it: "It's true that last December, during the Democratic nomination fight, Kerry did call for 'replacing the Patriot Act with a new law.' But Kerry is not calling for repealing the law-enforcement powers alluded to in the ad. He's calling for modification -- specifically tighter control by judges. There's a big difference between 'repeal' and adding judicial oversight. Bush campaign officials say the ad is meant to refer to 'sneak-and-peek' searches, which are conducted without the knowledge of the subject, and 'roving wiretaps' in which authority to eavesdrop is applied to the individual rather than to a specific telephone number. Kerry's position on those matters is spelled out in some detail on his website, and it simply does not support what the Bush ad claims."

In other words, this ad is based on lies.

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Geraldine Sealey

Geraldine Sealey is senior news editor at Salon.com.

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