November 13th, 2007
12:05 PM ET
7 years ago

Campaign defends ad depicting terrorist attack

Tancredo's new ad depicts a terrorist attack on an American mall.

WASHINGTON (CNN) - Republican presidential candidate Tom Tancredo's new television ad depicting a terrorist attack on an American mall is raising eyebrows Tuesday, but the Colorado Republican's campaign says it doesn't cross the line.

"There's nothing over the top about this," Bay Buchanan, Tancredo's campaign manager told CNN. "It's quite accurate."

The 30-second ad, set to begin running on Iowa cable stations this week, depicts a hooded man walking into a crowded mall with a backpack. Over the sound of a ticking clock, the man abandons the backpack at a bench and an explosion is heard.

"There are consequences to open borders beyond the 20 million aliens who have come to take our jobs," the ad's narrator says. "Islamic terrorists now freely roam U.S. soil. Jihadists, who froth with hate, here to do what they have in London, Spain, and Russia."

Buchanan brushed aside critics who say the ad is playing the "fear card" and cited a recent FBI memo that said officials had received a tip Al Qaeda terrorists may be planning attacks on shopping malls in Los Angeles and Chicago during the upcoming holiday season. The FBI also said there is no indication the tip is credible.

"That's a common response of individuals who don't like your message," she said of those who have said the ad is designed to instill fear. "But the key is this: Is there a concern that this could happen to us at anytime? It has to be the case, the FBI just confirmed it."

"Washington doesn't have the guts, or the courage, or the will to do their job which is to secure their nation and that is why we face this threat," she continued. "Unless we speak about it, we can't expect the American people to put the proper pressure on Washington to do what they were elected to do."

Tancredo, who has placed the issue of illegal immigration front-and-center in his long-shot presidential bid, previously caused a stir in August when he said bombing holy Muslim sites would serve as a good "deterrent" to prevent Islamic fundamentalists from attacking the United States.

– CNN Ticker Producer Alexander Mooney


Filed under: Iowa • Tom Tancredo
soundoff (120 Responses)
  1. Tom, ALBUQUERQUE, NM

    Tom Tancredo is a non-factor in this race for the presidency. He is only swinging at the wind.

    November 13, 2007 12:06 pm at 12:06 pm |
  2. J.Crobuzon

    Pat Buchanan's sister is backing Tancredo? Do they hold the campaign meetings down at the Losers' Club? Like Tancredo's campaign itself, there's no evidence that this is credible.

    November 13, 2007 12:06 pm at 12:06 pm |
  3. Anonymous, Las Vegas, NV

    So, what is this guy's position on spending $10 billion a month on a war in Iraq?
    It seems to me that anyone serious about defending and protecting our country would pledge in their campaigns to stop wasting our money in Iraq, in the name of "securing our nation", and instead pledge to spend that money on practical solutions.
    Oh, and by the way, I am pretty sure that bombing holy sites of anyone's religion isn't a practical solution.
    Sounds like Tancredo might have forgotten to take his meds...

    November 13, 2007 12:08 pm at 12:08 pm |
  4. Lance in Monrovia CA

    These people, these guys like Tancredo are really, really pathetic.

    They can find nothing positive to discuss. They have no new ideas and no honest thoughts, so they resort to fear, pure and simple. Fear that controls and fear that feeds their own greed.

    They ignore global warming. They say the economy is vibrant even as it collapses around middle America's ears. They support a war of blood for oil and monger to further wars in other distant lands that will trade even more blood for their thirsty greed.

    Shame on them. Shame on you Tom Tancredo. Shame on all of you that hide so proudly behind the American flag and behind a curtain of fear. You are commiting a very grievous sin. You sin against your country and yourself.

    A world with you in charge is a black world indeed.

    November 13, 2007 12:09 pm at 12:09 pm |
  5. Oh Please! Atlanta, GA

    Fear is what helped Bush get re-elected. Stupidity will elect Republicans if it can.

    November 13, 2007 12:11 pm at 12:11 pm |
  6. Ryan Theriot, Chicago, IL

    All we had to do was lock airplane cockpit doors. Can we have our $2 TRILLION dollars back please?

    November 13, 2007 12:13 pm at 12:13 pm |
  7. Thomas, St. Petersburg, FL

    Contrary to John Edwards' claim, terrorism is NOT a "bumper sticker".

    Regardless of what that political genious Rosie O'Donnell may think, President Bush and his buddies did NOT cause the World Trade Center's building seven to "implode".

    Rhetorical question: How come liberals squeal and scream "Freedom of Speech" for Sean Penn, Rosie O'Donnell, and other overpaid Hollywood brats whenever they condemn America as the root of all evil throughout the world, but do not extend it to Republicans and those who embrace conservative values ?

    November 13, 2007 12:16 pm at 12:16 pm |
  8. Brad, Omaha NE

    when will americans learn that scare tactics only work to undermine our freedoms. if you allow this stuff to affect you emotionally then the terrorists have won.

    and by terrorists i mean the republican party, the current administration and basically neo-cons in general.

    and noone wants them to win... do they?

    November 13, 2007 12:16 pm at 12:16 pm |
  9. Greg, Nashville TN

    Tancredo trying to scare people into paying attention to him.

    November 13, 2007 12:20 pm at 12:20 pm |
  10. Former US Army Officer, Kansas

    As someone who has spend his entire life in the serve to the nation, I will state up front that this type of ad DOES NOT serve the nations interests.

    Spreading fear and mistrust is not a political message, but a message that screams I have no message for you so let me scare you to death.

    I am at a lose for words at such irresponsible theatics.

    November 13, 2007 12:20 pm at 12:20 pm |
  11. Jeannie, Sacramento, CA

    I concur with Bay Buchanan. Why don't we talk about it openly and loudly? But if the congressman wanted to be truly honest about borders, he should've toned down the ad to relfect the current wave of tuberculosis and childhood diseases, domestic violence and child abuse attributed to cultural codes, all brought to the US by the illegal influx from the southern borders and on record at every Health and Human Services agency in every state. Let's not also forget the number of homicides committed by these illegal aliens. ILLEGALS GO HOME!

    November 13, 2007 12:20 pm at 12:20 pm |
  12. RAINIE FT MYERS, FL

    YEP...MORE FEAR POLITICS..ANYTHING TO SAY ABOUT OUR COUNTRY'S ISSUES?? YOU KNOW, HEALTH CARE, SOCIAL SECURITY, WATER, BRIDGES, EDUCATION, ENVIRONMENT, JOBS.....

    November 13, 2007 12:22 pm at 12:22 pm |
  13. Jody Crockett, St. Louis, Missouri

    It doesn't matter if one is a Republican or Democrat, Mr. Tancredo is right about the possibility of that kind of terrorism on our soil from the muslim extremist and we should all be concerned about it. It isn't the fear card. It is the reality card.

    November 13, 2007 12:23 pm at 12:23 pm |
  14. Glenn, Chesterton In

    Why do I have a feeling of DeJaVu? Barry Goldwarter 1964? The infamous "Daisy" ad? Its the same thing all over again. Take the latest fear (in this case terrorism) and use it.

    November 13, 2007 12:23 pm at 12:23 pm |
  15. christian, selden, ny

    the ad is something that could quite possibly happen....the only problem is there will be pretty much no way to stop it. especially not by electing a republican! if the republican president completely took our focus off of the terrorists by basically leaving afghanistan and attacked a secular government that definetely would not allow a rogue terrorist orginization to operate in his country especially with a dicatators paranoia, then what makes you think the republicans are so tough on terror!?!? the counter terrorism and intelligence community of this country will operate regardless of who is in power stop letting the republicans make you think they are the ones holding the terror groups at bay. the democrats arent going to cut off the counter terrorism units there is going to be nothing changed in the efforts our agents are doing. republicans and democrats are politicians the main difference is the republicans are trying to take credit for the fight on terror when they have nothing to do with it!

    November 13, 2007 12:32 pm at 12:32 pm |
  16. Tristan, Chicago, IL

    This is the current state of politics and political dialogue in our country - we are told that by reporting it received a tip with no credibility that the "FBI has just confirmed" this sort of fear-mongering message. And, even more worrisome, that if the FBI confirms something, "it has to be the case." No wonder citizens have such a hard time sorting out the facts and making informed choices at election time.

    November 13, 2007 12:34 pm at 12:34 pm |
  17. dan, Denver, CO

    Tom Tancredo is an utter embarrasment for our great state of CO. I had nothing to do with electing him but still apologize on my state's behalf for this clown. He thinks the earth is flat and that we used to hang out with dinosaurs so you have to forgive his sheer ignorance.

    November 13, 2007 12:37 pm at 12:37 pm |
  18. Kristy, St. Louis, Missouri

    This is irresponsible and just bad politics! Trumping up fears at any time is bad but now he is sabotaging the econemy and the sales for retailers in malls. Making people so terrified that the never leave their homes is not the answer, in fact it is just what their supposed terrorists would want. And might I add that bombing of Holy sites is idiotic, cruel and insensitive, not only for Muslims but for all religions.

    November 13, 2007 12:37 pm at 12:37 pm |
  19. Paul C. Palmetto Bay, FL

    When all else fails bring out the tried and true fear card. It worked very well for Bush.
    Our homegrown nuts and criminals have killed and caused more damage than Al Qaeda and we accept that but we live in trembling fear that the terrorist will strike again so we will vote for anyone who promises to keep us safe.

    November 13, 2007 12:41 pm at 12:41 pm |
  20. roger, conway sc

    YEP-MORE FEAR POLITICS by Rainie Ft Myers FL–I could not have said it better my self...

    November 13, 2007 12:41 pm at 12:41 pm |
  21. Adrienne Malik Chicago, IL

    We do not need another leader who will continue to poison this country with prejudice and ignorance. We need a leader who can guide our country towards peace with the other nations of the world; not one who will continue to divide us against other countries by preying on our fears. We have had eight years of scare tactics by a government that promotes fighting violence with hate and more violence. The results of that kind of "diplomacy" speak for themselves. It is time for a change from the kind of government promoted by men like Tancredo.

    November 13, 2007 12:45 pm at 12:45 pm |
  22. TK, Carol Stream, IL

    The ad is certainly a blatant attempt to inspire fear and is quite similar to the old criminal revolving door spot run during the Dukakis campaign years ago. The only purpose it serves for me is to insure that I do not vote for Tancredo

    November 13, 2007 12:46 pm at 12:46 pm |
  23. Truth, USA

    Kind of like Gore fear-mongering us into buying carbon credits...

    November 13, 2007 12:46 pm at 12:46 pm |
  24. Andrew Phillips

    Here we go again lets all be afraid I think that Byrnes put it quite well "Too many people are thinking of security instead of opportunity. They seem more afraid of life than death."
    – James F. Byrnes

    November 13, 2007 12:47 pm at 12:47 pm |
  25. Bee A. Fraid, Boogetyville, MD

    It IS playing the "fear card" when your campaign is centered on scaring people into voting for you. Good intelligence catches the bad guys, not bombs in Baghdad, not the "rainbow of doom", and certainly not hot air spewing, fear mongering politicians. That my friend, IS reality.

    November 13, 2007 12:47 pm at 12:47 pm |
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