WASHINGTON (AP) — A conservative nonprofit group with a past link to Sen. John McCain's presidential campaign wants to spend $2.8 million on an ad questioning Democrat Barack Obama's relationship to a founder of the 1960s radical group Weather Underground.
The ad, which is expected to begin airing Thursday in Michigan and Friday in Ohio, focuses on William Ayers, whose Weatherman organization took credit for a series of bombings, including nonfatal explosions at the Pentagon and U.S. Capitol four decades ago.
American Issues Project, the sponsor of the ad, is a nonprofit 501(c)4 organization. One of its board members, Ed Failor Jr., was a paid consultant for McCain's campaign in Iowa last year. The campaign paid his firm $50,000 until July 2007. American Issues Project spokesman Christian Pinkston said Failor has no connection to the McCain campaign now.
TPJ: That may be true now but he certainly still supports his campaign and in a vicious way so John McCain should denounce this kind of Willy Horton/Swift Boat attack seeing how closely McCain was tied to this guy up until just one year ago. But we know he won't because don't be fooled, he's not the same McCain from 2000 who faced these Bush/Rove tactics himself and saw just how disgusting yet sadly effective they were. So despite saying before the general election campaign that he wanted to run a civil campaign, McCain has embraced the Bush/Rove campaign style because he has become so hungry for power. The victim has now become the perpetraitor.
Ayers is now a professor at the University of Illinois at Chicago. He and Obama live in Chicago's Hyde Park neighborhood and served together on the board of the Woods Fund, a Chicago-based charity that develops community groups to help the poor. Obama left the board in December 2002.
Obama also was the first chairman of the Chicago Annenberg Challenge, a school reform group of which Ayers was a founder. Ayers also held a meet-the-candidate event at his home for Obama when Obama first ran for office in the mid-1990s.
"Barack Obama is friends with Ayers, defending him as, quote, 'Respectable' and 'Mainstream,'" the ad states. "Obama's political career was launched in Ayers' home. And the two served together on a left-wing board. Why would Barack Obama be friends with someone who bombed the Capitol and is proud of it? Do you know enough to elect Barack Obama?"
Obama's campaign accused McCain of having a hand in the ad, saying he "dispatched his paid consultant to launch this despicable ad from a so-called 'independent' committee." Federal Election Commission records show the last payment from McCain's campaign to Failor's consulting firm, Targeted Consulting, was July 2, 2007.
"Instead of invoking Paris, Britney and obscure sixties radicals, Sen. McCain should take the day off at one of his seven homes to consider whether his support for outsourcing, tax breaks for companies who ship jobs overseas and continued spending of $10 billion a month in Iraq is really putting 'country first,'" Obama spokesman Tommy Vietor said.
Obama has distanced himself from the radical activity of the Weather Underground. In an interview with "Fox News Sunday" in April, Obama said he "deplored" Ayers' actions in the 1960s.
"Mr. Ayers is a 60-plus-year-old individual who lives in my neighborhood, who did something that I deplore 40 years ago when I was 6 or 7 years old," Obama said then. "By the time I met him, he is a professor of education at the University of Illinois. We served on a board together that had Republicans, bankers, lawyers, focused on education."
TPJ: So what these people are saying is that despite probably being s0-called, "Christians;" redemption isn't possible. That no matter what a person does after living a life of crime isn't worth a damn, such as Ayers working with Obama and others on a charity board to help the poor?!! Ayers is trying to make amends but these psuedo Christian right-wingers apparently don't believe in granting the very forgiveness and atonement that they themselves want from their "God." How ironic.
It's not like Ayers and Obama were involved together in Ayers past with Obama being 6 years old at the time but of course this ad won't mention that critical bit of information along with other important facts. Besides, does John McCain really want to go down the road of associations because if he does not denounce this ad then I say it's time to raise McCain's connection with the infamous Keating 5.
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