Thursday, August 16, 2012

UK: Both sides use of negative ads

The Guardian

Romney and Obama duel over negative ads as campaign enters bitter phase

Controversial ads have fuelled vicious back-and-forths as Romney accuses Obama of 'doing anything' to stay in power

But the Romney team's attempt to paint Obama as a negative campaigner may lead to allegations of hypocrisy. Romney's campaign, and the Super Pacs who back it, have not been shy of airing negative attack ads themselves. Romney also revealed a ruthless side during the Republican nomination race where he and his supporters unleashed a barrage of negative ads that helped beat off the challenges of former House speaker Newt Gingrich and former Pennsylvania senator Rick Santorum. "Negative campaigning is very much coming from both sides," said Cohen.

There are also other shadowy organisations beginning to get involved. On Wednesday a group called Special Operations Opsec Education Fund launched a 22-minute long video called Dishonorable Disclosures, aimed at attacking Obama for taking credit for the death of terrorist leader Osama bin Laden and for security leaks from his administration.

Though Opsec says it is an independent, non-partisan group made up of former special forces soldiers, the group's video explicitly goes after Obama. Its leader, former navy seal Scott Taylor, is also a former Republican congressional candidate. The group's formation has prompted comparisons to the Swift Boat campaign of 2004 which helped derail senator John Kerry's bid for the White House by questioning his service record in the Vietnam war.

Read it at The Guardian:

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