October 1st, 2008
06:20 PM ET
10 years ago

New ad targeting Obama features connection to Rev. Wright

A new Independent ad targets Obama's past associations.

A new Independent ad targets Obama's past associations.

(CNN) - The conservative group Judicial Confirmation Network is launching a new television ad in key battleground states Wednesday that in part features Barack Obama's ties to the Rev. Jeremiah Wright, the controversial pastor who nearly derailed the Illinois senator's presidential bid last spring.

The independent ad is the first campaign spot in the general election to highlight Obama's lengthy relationship with Wright, a subject that generated considerable media scrutiny during the primary season but one John McCain has said should not be an issue in the race for the White House.

The ad also ties Obama to William Ayers and Tony Rezko - two prominent and controversial figures in Chicago. Ayers, a University of Chicago professor, was a founder of the 1960's radical group Weatherman that claimed responsibility for bombing the Pentagon. Rezko is a real estate developer convicted earlier this year of mail fraud, attempted extortion and money laundering who helped Obama secure a property in Chicago. Both men have been longtime supporters of Obama's political career, but the Illinois senator has said he is not close to either one of them.

Earlier: McCain says Ayers connection 'open to question'

A spokeswoman for the group says more than $500,000 is being spent on the ad, which is set to run in Ohio and Michigan markets through Election Day. It will also run nationally on Fox News during the upcoming debates.

The organization is classified as a 501(c)4, and as such does not have to disclose its donors to the Federal Election Commission. it's the second 501(c)4 to launch an ad attacking Obama Wednesday — Veterans for Freedom, which opposes his position on the war in Iraq, is spending more than $2 million on an ad taking aim at the Illinois senator.

"Choosing the right justices is critical for America," the ad's announcer states. "We don't know who Barack Obama would choose, but we know this: He chose as one of his first financial backers a slumlord now convicted on 16 counts of corruption. Obama chose as an associate a man who helped to bomb the Pentagon and said he ‘didn't do enough.’ And Obama chose as his pastor a man who has blamed America for the 9/11 attacks.

"Obama chose to associate with these men, while voting against these men," the announcer also says, as images of current Supreme Court Justices John Roberts and Samuel Alito are shown.

The group, which advocates naming conservative justices to the bench, says the ad is part of a $1 million grassroots campaign to "to raise awareness and recruit activists on the critical issue of the U.S. Supreme Court." The campaign will also include an extensive outreach effort including direct mail, e-mail, and text messaging.

soundoff (339 Responses)
  1. ralph

    And so, the swiftboating begins.

    October 1, 2008 05:03 pm at 5:03 pm |
  2. What are they thinking?!

    Oh good grief. That dog won't bark. We've heard this song already.. Can't the republicans to come up with something original? zzzzzzzzzzzzz

    October 1, 2008 05:05 pm at 5:05 pm |

    m r,,,,,,,,,,,,,,o b a m a,,,,,,,,,,,,,,e x p l a i n,,,,,,,,,,,,h o w,,,,,,,,,,,y o u,,,,,,,,,,,,

    n e v e r,,,,,,,,,,h e a r d,,,,,,,,,,,,r a c i s t,,,,,,,,,,,,s e r m o n s,,,,,,,,,,,,i n,,,,,,,

    t h e,,,,,,,,2 0,,,,,,,,,,y ea r s,,,,,,,,y o u,,,,,,,,,,w e r e ,,,,,,,,,,,,a t,,,,,,,,,,t h e,,,,,,,,,

    c h u r c h

    October 1, 2008 05:05 pm at 5:05 pm |
  4. s

    The GOP needs to stick to the issues.

    October 1, 2008 05:05 pm at 5:05 pm |
  5. James Cox

    Been there and done that....next?

    October 1, 2008 05:05 pm at 5:05 pm |
  6. Veteran for Obama

    It won't work!!! Enough said.

    October 1, 2008 05:06 pm at 5:06 pm |
  7. PA for Obama

    is it all they got? i smell desperation in the air...

    October 1, 2008 05:06 pm at 5:06 pm |
  8. victor,nj

    This story has been told already. America needs to learn more about the Keating 5 scandal now.

    October 1, 2008 05:06 pm at 5:06 pm |
  9. Lala

    Are you guys for real ? You know this just shows how bigoted many americans still are.. Voting for McCain is going to send this country to the depths like it has never seen before.

    October 1, 2008 05:07 pm at 5:07 pm |
  10. Cuban-mama-4-OBAMA


    Its obvious that the GOP strategy is attack......demean......attack!

    Republicans CAN NOT win on the issues so they attack, distract and demean.

    Republicans DO NOT GET IT that they are losing BECAUSE of their constant negativity.......... that's all they have.

    Please,people, wake up, do not let Republican-hate-fear-and-war mongers fool you again!

    October 1, 2008 05:07 pm at 5:07 pm |
  11. suzie q

    that's all they have, bigotry, fear and hate-mongering?


    October 1, 2008 05:07 pm at 5:07 pm |
  12. Independent for McCain

    It's about freaking time that this stuff comes up!! I believe that Obama's friends are huge in this Presidential election. Especially folks who are considered your religious mentors!!! Obama even said it himself! I'm glad it's finally being brought up!!!

    October 1, 2008 05:07 pm at 5:07 pm |
  13. carlo

    Obama has already been tried in the fire, and has come out as pure gold. This issue is old. Can you say Keating Five? You know, a scandal where McCain dodged prison with that POW sob story he always falls back on.

    October 1, 2008 05:09 pm at 5:09 pm |
  14. Here we go again!!

    I think the Rev is good for Obama's bid for the White house. Anyone who listen to this man spew that crap is a idiot. Rev Wright is insane it was best for Obama to distance himself from him. Now if we bring out Rev Wright lets bring out "speaking in tongues" pastor of Sara Palin and John McCain controversal pastors.

    It's only right!

    October 1, 2008 05:09 pm at 5:09 pm |
  15. Central Scruitinizer

    Well I guess in all fairness Obamas campaign should dig in with the Palin/voodoo ritualc with Rev Moothy. This is a definate sign of desperation on the Mcsame camp so its gonna get nastier and dirtier. Maybe about time for Obama to go nuclear and bring up the Keating Five and how he sang like a little birdy for the vietnamese. I think these are available for viewing?

    October 1, 2008 05:09 pm at 5:09 pm |
  16. chelle

    Are you kidding me? Conservatives may not want to open this up...

    Keating 5, Witchcraft, speaking in tongues, Alaskan independance, cheating on spouses, open investigations, "curing" homosexuality, and the list goes on........ Shall we really go down this disgusting road??

    October 1, 2008 05:09 pm at 5:09 pm |
  17. Obama 08

    Not a good idea RNC...just ask Palin about her Pastor, Cindy about her drug habit, and McCain about the Keating 5.

    October 1, 2008 05:09 pm at 5:09 pm |
  18. tennisguypitt

    Okay... who didn't see this coming?

    Obama/Biden '08

    October 1, 2008 05:09 pm at 5:09 pm |

    This is all they have?

    This is six months old

    This election will be a landslide for Obama.

    October 1, 2008 05:09 pm at 5:09 pm |
  20. Micheal shoemac republican voting for Obama in miami florida

    Boooooooooooooooo old news,,

    And people need to listen to the full context of Rev wrights comments... he was talking about the many innocent lives that the US have Killed....

    But this is old news... we heard that durning the primaries

    Obama 08

    October 1, 2008 05:09 pm at 5:09 pm |
  21. Ohio for Obama

    WOOOWWWWWWW HERE COMES THE LOW-ROAD GUTTER EXPRESS...well, at least this'll make people realize John McCain left his honor at the door

    I wonder if he cares that people are so disgusted by his campaign, that they're willing to disregard even his military service regarding him as nothing more than a dishonorable sleaze

    October 1, 2008 05:10 pm at 5:10 pm |
  22. Kevin Leo (Jonesboro, GA)

    You knew that this garbage was coming, especially when ALL of the polls showed how far McCain was falling back!!!

    October 1, 2008 05:10 pm at 5:10 pm |
  23. Denver loves Obama!

    Here we go again, the RNC spin machine. Completely tasteless. These lies have been dispelled time and time again. Obama cut all ties to Rezko after he found out about it and all the money that he received from him, he donated to charity. The RNC is panicking. They are pulling all punches. This will be seen as a desperation move.

    You want to read something shady. Google: Keating 5.

    McCain's campaign tactics have stripped away everyone ounce of respect I have for him. It's full on despise now. What a joke. Grow up McCain.

    October 1, 2008 05:10 pm at 5:10 pm |
  24. Harry

    Its about time somebody started calling attention to this.

    October 1, 2008 05:10 pm at 5:10 pm |
  25. Krystyn

    Wow, bringing up old dirt because your numbers are sliding McCain? America has already hashed this Rev Wright thing out.

    Should we now bring up McCain's infidelity? HIs ties to the Keating 5? His ties to Graham who de-regukated everything in sight?

    Dangerous game McCain is playing. You'd think he'd stop and take his campaign back from Rove and the other puppet masters, as this style of politics doesn't seem to be as effective this time around.

    October 1, 2008 05:10 pm at 5:10 pm |
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