Thursday, August 12

The Race Card: Another High-Water Mark for GOP Campaigning

We're not shocked. We're not surprised. We're just shaking our heads now. The irony and dishonesty meters broke when this story did.
Group Runs Anti-Kerry Ads on Black Radio Stations

A group financed by a major Republican contributor has begun running radio ads in about a dozen cities, many in battleground states, attacking Sen. John F. Kerry as "rich, white and wishy-washy" and mocking his wife for boasting of her African roots.

The D.C.-based group, People of Color United, has substantial financial backing from J. Patrick Rooney, the former chairman of Golden Rule Insurance Co. and the founder of a new firm, Medical Savings Insurance Co. Both firms specialize in medical savings accounts, created by Republican-backed 1996 legislation, and health savings accounts, which were created by President Bush's 2003 Medicare prescription drug legislation.

Rooney, who is white, said in an e-mail response to an inquiry from The Washington Post: "I support [the] group because the genuine word from the black community should be heard, not white folks saying for them.

"One of the radio ads addresses Kerry's failure to vote on a bill to extend unemployment benefits for 13 weeks: "It needed 60 votes to pass. Ninety-nine out of 100 senators voted -- Kerry did not! It lost by one vote! Maybe Kerry thought the more of us who are unemployed and hurting, the more likely we would vote Democrat."

Another ad attacks Teresa Heinz Kerry, who, at the Democratic convention last month cited her birth and upbringing in Mozambique and who has described herself as African American. In the radio commercial, the announcer says: "His wife says she's an African American. While technically true, I don't believe a white woman, raised in Africa, surrounded by servants, qualifies."
We dug up (surprise) some of Mr. Rooney's past philanthropical endeavors which include:

- Trying to convince schools and churches to contribute to Republican political campaigns
- In 1995, his insurance companies were found to accept only the healthiest applicants.
- Gave $1.9 million to the Republican Leadership Coalition to run attack ads against Al Gore in 2000.
- Profiteered (tremendously) off Bush's 2003 Medicare Revision Bill.
- Joined Gov. Pete Wilson in California to try to pass the "Silence Labor Unions Forever Act" which would force California's Democrat-heavy unions to get membership vote before contributing to political causes.

Yeah. He loves all kinds of people. Just as long as they buy into the right wing agenda.