October 1st, 2008
06:20 PM ET
6 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. Michael

    Ayers was a Univ of Illinois at Chicago professor not a Univ of Chicago prof. Do you guys even bother to fact check?

    October 1, 2008 05:26 pm at 5:26 pm |
  2. Lydia

    McCain insulted America by choosing Caribou Barbie (and we've always been told blondes are dumb). McCain needs to focus more on trumpeting what he will do for America instead of trying to swiftboat Obama.

    October 1, 2008 05:26 pm at 5:26 pm |
  3. Ken

    Jeremiah Wright and William Ayers, hm? Do they really want to open this up? Because they're going to get Palin's pastor that hunted a witch in Africa and the Keating Five in return. And in this day, the Keating Five is likely to get a LOT more attention.

    October 1, 2008 05:27 pm at 5:27 pm |
  4. Glenn in California

    Oh, and hasn't this horse already been beat to death?

    October 1, 2008 05:27 pm at 5:27 pm |
  5. NW Dem

    These issues do show Obama's lack of good, sound judgement. They are fair game just as any record of Sen. McCain's.

    I think this dog will hunt.

    October 1, 2008 05:27 pm at 5:27 pm |
  6. redhead from Toronto

    P.S. Half a MILLION $$'s on this muck. What a waste, who watches FOX News? Not me, don't want my brain addled...

    October 1, 2008 05:27 pm at 5:27 pm |
  7. perplexed

    THIS IS SOOOO LOW.

    October 1, 2008 05:27 pm at 5:27 pm |
  8. Anonymous

    Macain is behind this AD. If not why don't he ask those full for nothing friends to stop it. American is suffering and the fundation of our economy is no longer strong. So American wake up and pay back this big full Reps.

    October 1, 2008 05:27 pm at 5:27 pm |
  9. judy, Wisconsin

    I think they should start running the footage of Sarah in her church saying that God wants the Iraq war and the Alaska pipeline. Also the witch doctor laying hands on her and praying.

    October 1, 2008 05:27 pm at 5:27 pm |
  10. Jean, CANADA

    Goodbye John!!!!!! It certainly wasn't a pleasure competing in this presidential election with ya!!! While were busy fixing the nation goodluck to you in hell!!! LIAR!!

    ENJOY you be in familiar company.

    OBAMA 08, 12

    October 1, 2008 05:27 pm at 5:27 pm |
  11. NW Dem

    It just shows his poor judgment. This dog will hunt!

    October 1, 2008 05:27 pm at 5:27 pm |
  12. Debby

    Well at least these are true ads that have been proven. I wonder where factcheck will be on this probably no where to be seen.

    October 1, 2008 05:28 pm at 5:28 pm |
  13. ran

    So when it comes to the Republicans: "you can't teach old dogs new tricks". How pathetic these people are.

    Vote Obama/Biden and only other Democrats to get this country back for the people.

    October 1, 2008 05:28 pm at 5:28 pm |
  14. white repub

    if thats the best they can do..hell i'm voting for BO..i want to hear some issues

    October 1, 2008 05:28 pm at 5:28 pm |
  15. Credit Card Republicans

    We can make ads with Palins Pastor that hunts witch doctors.

    October 1, 2008 05:28 pm at 5:28 pm |
  16. Al

    We have not seen the worst of it. The Hoover/Bush/McCain/Palin circus will pull every trick they can to confuse the electorate. I hope voters will be able to see through it this time but then again, I thought voters would have been able to see through it in 2000 and 2004...

    October 1, 2008 05:28 pm at 5:28 pm |
  17. Jean, CANADA

    Goodbye John!!!!!! It certainly wasn't a pleasure competing in this presidential election with ya!!! While were busy fixing the nation goodluck to you in hell!!! LIAR!!

    ENJOY you be in familiar company.

    OBAMA 08, 12!!

    October 1, 2008 05:28 pm at 5:28 pm |
  18. aka

    While Reverand Wrights words were disturbing, it should not be the focus of the campaign. I attended a church for years and years and there were MANY sermons that I had some problems with. Also, preachers say many off the wall things that make good sound bites but you have to listen to them in context. While I completely disagree with Reverand Wright's remarks- I disagree with Sarah Palin's preachers just as much. While Obama was not at this sermon, her preacher is actually over her praying about ridding of withcraft. Strange. Then there is the group of preachers who have outright questioned McCain's beliefs- they have stated he knows nothing about the bible and never talks about a single time he has connected with God since Vietnam.

    October 1, 2008 05:28 pm at 5:28 pm |
  19. Phil, Ashburn, VA

    Mcshame you ought to be ashamed of yourself. All republicans can do is spread hatred. See you on Nov 4th.

    October 1, 2008 05:28 pm at 5:28 pm |
  20. suzyku

    These people are scum and liars! Anyone who actually has a mind knows better!

    October 1, 2008 05:28 pm at 5:28 pm |
  21. Rose

    KEATING 5, Sarah Palin's Witch-Hunter, McCain's dubious military service, McCain's adultery, Troopergate–and this is just SOME of the ARSENAL Obama has to play with. Bring it on.

    Obama/Biden08

    October 1, 2008 05:28 pm at 5:28 pm |
  22. Phil in KC

    McCain's campaign strategists have studied Rove well. This is as low as anything he would have put out. So maybe the Obama campaign needs to put out a commercial about McCain's Keating 5 involvement. Given America's attitude toward Wall Street and the big financial institutions right now, I doubt they'd take kindly to that.

    October 1, 2008 05:28 pm at 5:28 pm |
  23. Jean, CANADA

    Goodbye John!!!!!!

    It certainly wasn't a pleasure competing in this presidential election with ya!!! While were busy fixing the nation goodluck to you in hell!!! LIAR!!

    ENJOY you be in familiar company.

    OBAMA 08, 12

    October 1, 2008 05:29 pm at 5:29 pm |
  24. Dee

    Hey POCHOLO, if that's your real name,

    How about commenting with some substance instead of connecting with ignorance? Oh I forgot your a McCainight..

    October 1, 2008 05:29 pm at 5:29 pm |
  25. Paying Attention

    Forget rev Wright. We should talk about paying $150 each to shoot wolves and having women pay for their own rape kits.

    Bad choice McCain. Let Palin talk with the real media.

    October 1, 2008 05:29 pm at 5:29 pm |
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