September 14th, 2007
07:15 PM ET
11 years ago

Strategy Session:

The top political issues of the day are debated every weekday evening during Strategy Session in CNN's Situation Room.

WASHINGTON (CNN) - The debate gets heated in a special edition of the Situation Room's "Strategy Session." Watch James Carville, Democratic strategist and CNN contributor, and Terry Jeffrey, Editor-at-Large of Human Events, as they spar over the liberal advocacy group, the political ad wars, and the war in Iraq.

Related: moves from 'betray us' to 'betrayal' ad

Related: Giuliani blasts NY Times for MoveOn ad

Filed under: Hillary Clinton • Iraq • • Political ads • Strategy Session
September 14th, 2007
02:29 PM ET
11 years ago moves from 'betray us' to 'betrayal' ad

The target of a political firestorm this week for its NY Times ad, is launching a new TV ad next week.

WASHINGTON (CNN) - Five days after set off a political firestorm by publishing an ad in the New York Times attacking the top U.S. commander in Iraq, Gen. David Petraeus, the liberal advocacy group has set its sights on President Bush.

The organization announced Friday it is rolling out a new national television ad campaign next week accusing Bush of "a betrayal of trust."

"Before the surge, George Bush had 130,000 troops stuck in Iraq," states the ad's narrator. "Americans had elected a new Congress to bring them home. Instead, Bush sent 30,000 more troops. "

"Now he's making a big deal about you guessed it...pulling out 30,000," the narrator adds. "So, next year, there will still be 130,000 troops stuck in Iraq."

"[President Bush has] given us a sham draw-down plan — 30,000 troops by next July is not a plan to end the war," Nita Chaudhary, a spokeswoman for the organization said in a statement. "No one is fooled by this. It’s just a political scheme to provide cover for Republicans and run out the clock to the end of his term."

Absent from the television spot is Petraeus, who was accused by MoveOn in its now infamous "Petraeus or Betray us" New York Times ad of not being truthful in his Iraq report for political reasons.

The Times ad claimed Patraeus "will not admit what everyone knows: Iraq is mired in an unwinnable religious civil war." It also suggested that Petraeus' testimony was influenced by the White House.

Eli Pariser, executive director of, told CNN the group wanted to move past Petraeus in the TV ad campaign and "remind people about the president's role in this as well."

And despite condemnation from members of both parties over the ad in the New York Times, Pariser says he has no regrets the organization placed it, saying, "We're happy it caused people to take a close look at the statistics."

Meanwhile former New York City Mayor Rudy Giuliani, a candidate for president, placed his own ad in the New York Times Friday rebutting and attacking "the Democrats' orchestrated attacks on General Petraeus."

- CNN Ticker Producer Alexander Mooney

Filed under:
September 14th, 2007
09:55 AM ET
11 years ago

Giuliani blasts NY Times for MoveOn ad

Giuliani said Clinton,, and the New York Times should apologize 'for what they did.'

(CNN) -'s New York Times ad calling into question Gen. David Petraeus' testimony before Congress drew more Republican ire Thursday - this time over the price the non-profit political advocacy group paid for the full-page ad.

The New York Post, citing, reported Thursday that the organization paid $65,000 for the ad, calling it a $116,000 discount from the Times' usual $167,000 price. That prompted a pair of GOP presidential candidates to complain.

Rudy Giuliani, campaigning in Atlanta, blasted the Times and demanded that the newspaper "give us the same rate, the heavily discounted rate they gave for that abominable ad."

And on Friday, the paper published the former New York City mayor's ad that defends Petraeus' record and criticizes Sen. Hillary Clinton, D-New York, for her recent tough questioning of the general.


Filed under: • Rudy Giuliani
September 11th, 2007
11:46 AM ET
11 years ago

Lawmakers seek to condemn Petraeus 'betray us' ad

Gen. David Petraeus listens to opening statements Monday before testifying at a congressional hearing.

WASHINGTON (CNN) - Sen. John Cornyn, R-Texas, introduced a Senate resolution Tuesday condemning's recent attack on Gen. David Petraeus in a New York Times advertisement. The move comes the same day the top U.S. general in Iraq is set to testify before key Senate committees.

The measure was offered as a nonbinding amendment to the transportation appropriations bill currently on the floor, and but was ruled “not germane” and will not be put to a vote.

Before the ruling, Senate Democratic Whip Richard Durbin, D-Illinois, gave a speech critical of the ad, calling it “a poor choice of words,” but he defended the group’s right to place the ad. He added that Democrats should not be held accountable for all the words and actions of anti-war groups.

The resolution follows a similar one introduced in the House Monday by Minority Leader John Boehner, who called the liberal advocacy group's advertisement "despicable" and said it should be "condemned by all members of Congress, including the Democratic leadership."

The ad in question displayed a large black-and-white picture of Petraeus with the caption "General Petraeus or General Betray Us?" Below the picture, the ad alleged the general would likely be untruthful in his testimony on Iraq for political reasons.

Several Democrats joined Republicans in condemning's ad Monday, but the group’s executive director said he stood by it.

"Every major independent study and many major news organizations cast serious doubt on Petraeus' claims," said Eli Pariser, executive director of Political Action Committee.”

- CNN’s Ted Barrett and Deirdre Walsh

Filed under:
September 9th, 2007
11:53 AM ET
11 years ago

Questions on Petraeus credibility before report

Petraeus is to deliver a report on the progress of the troop 'surge' in Iraq this week.

(CNN)–With the long awaited Iraq progress report set to be delivered this week to Congress by General David Petraeus, and Ambassador Ryan Crocker, the Sunday morning political talk shows were full of debate about what the report may ultimately say.

On Monday, the liberal advocacy group, is set to publish an ad in the New York Times that claims Petraeus is not giving an objective, independent view of the situation on the ground. The ad says 'General Petraeus or General Betray us? Cooking the books for the White House."

On ABC's 'This Week,' moderator George Stephanopoulos, asked GOP presidential hopeful John McCain what he thought about the attacks on Petraeus' credibility. "I know this man, and many people know this general. He's not going to allow politicization of the dedication and service that not only he is providing, but the brave young men and women under his command."

"He served his country with honor and distinction," the Senator from Arizona said, "and if we have to sink to that level to besmirch the reputation of a very fine and wonderful American, then I lament the level of dialogue. I hope that my Democrat friends will not be guided by"

Over on 'Fox News Sunday,' moderator Chris Wallace asked Senator Dianne Feinstein about recent attacks on Petraeus' credibility. "Well, I don't think General Petraeus has an independent view in that sense," the Democrat from California said. "General Petraeus is there to succeed. He may say the progress is uneven. He may say it's substantial."

"I don't know what he will say," Feinstein said. "You can be sure we'll listen to it. But I don't think he's an independent evaluator."

Petraeus, the top American military commander in Iraq, will deliver a progress report, written by the White House, to Congress this week. Ryan Crocker, the U.S. ambassador, will deliver his assessment on political progress there.

- CNN Political Desk Editor Jamie Crawford

Filed under: Congress • Iraq • John McCain •
September 6th, 2007
01:29 PM ET
11 years ago

Ad targeting pro-war senators shows children in fatigues

Children take the spotlight in a new anti-war ad aimed at Republicans.

WASHINGTON (CNN) - A prominent anti-war group launched a new advertisement Thursday showing children in army uniforms. The ad is being used to attack politically vulnerable pro-war Republican senators in their home states.

"How long will Republican Senators keep us stuck in Iraq?" asks an announcer in the ad. "Should we start training our children now?"

By showing children in fatigues, the Campaign to Defend America, associated with the liberal advocacy group, is aiming to illustrate the consequences of staying in what it calls "an endless civil war."

The ad is now being used to target Sen. Susan Collins of Maine, Sen. Mitch McConnell of Kentucky, Sen. Norm Coleman of Minnesota and Sen. Pete Domenici of New Mexico - all of whom voted for the war in Iraq and are up for reelection in 2008. The ad will air in both the senators’ home states and in Washington, DC.

"Mitch McConnell needs to put his vote where his mouth is," Washington Director Tom Matzzie said. "It's September and the surge has failed. No more six-month free passes for Bush. The ad reminds people that McConnell and other Republicans are pushing an endless war in Iraq - somebody else's civil war."

The ads will air for the next ten days.  As for the amount of money being spent to air it, the group said it is spending $279,000 to air the ad in Maine, Washington, DC and Kentucky and another $230,000 in Minnesota and New Mexico.

- CNN Associate Producer Lauren Kornreich

Filed under:
newer posts »