June 21, 2006

Why Mr. Straight Talk is Straight No More

Carroll Andrew Morse

A quote reported by Charles Bakst in yesterday’s Projo from Senator John McCain shows how Mr. Straight Talk has sadly morphed into Mr. Blatant Hypocrisy…

McCain joined in denouncing the Club for Growth's strident advertising effort: "I don't think that that's exactly what American politics should be all about, and why don't we have a little less of the negative and a little more of the positive?"
This is shameless. Via the campaign speech regulations he has shepherded through Congress, Senator McCain has done as much to tilt campaign discourse towards the negative as has any living American.

Under the McCain-Feingold rules, civic groups that run ads in favor of candidates they support are under the constant threat of having their efforts declared “illegally coordinated electioneering communications”. The resulting possibility of endless litigation has had a chilling effect on positive advertising.

There are, on the other hand, no limits on how much money can be spent on ads run by civic groups that discuss why a particular candidate is no good, so long as no explicit message to vote for or against anyone is conveyed. That's why third party ads often include a message suggesting that you call a candidate’s office to voice your displeasure; the contact-the-candidate message establishes that the ad has a primary purpose other than suggesting who people should vote for.

So if Senator McCain wants to blame someone for the absence of positive third-party campaign ads, he should look first into the mirror. He cerainly should not treat the public as utterly ignorant of the effects that his law has had on political discourse in this country. The Senator's weak civil liberties position on this issue is a large part of why he has no shot at the Republican Presidential nomination in 2008.

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This is jealousy. You're just sore he hates crazy old steve laffey - laffey, fired corporate profiteer. A self promoting former harvard business school grad, who had the bright idea to raise taxes when the city had no dinero.

Posted by: Jimmy Courage at June 23, 2006 10:06 PM