July 30th, 2008
06:36 AM ET
14 years ago

AFL-CIO launches campaign to dispel Obama rumors

[cnn-photo-caption image= http://i2.cdn.turner.com/cnn/2008/images/07/29/art.rumors.cnn.jpg caption="A new AFL-CIO mailer seeks to dispel continued false rumors about Obama."]

(CNN) - The nation's largest labor conglomerate says it's set to launch a major effort Tuesday to dispel ongoing rumors surrounding Barack Obama that continue to percolate more than 18 months after the Illinois senator launched his White House bid.

The organization is set to send out mailers to more than 600,000 union homes in crucial battleground states - including Ohio, Michigan, Pennsylvania, and Wisconsin - that directly address the false rumors that he is not a Christian, refuses to wear a flag pin on his lapel, and was not sworn into the Senate on the Bible.

It also beats back claims the Democratic presidential candidate was not born in America and refuses to put his hand on his heart during the Pledge of Allegiance. (view the mailer [PDF])

A majority of AFL-CIO's membership is considered part of the working-class demographic - the key voting bloc that overwhelmingly supported Hillary Clinton in the prolonged Democratic primary race and is likely to play a key role in the battleground states this November.

Watch: Obama battles rumors online

The AFL-CIO is also sending out a second mailer that features testimonials for union workers in support of Obama's policies on job creation, health care reform, and worker's rights. (View the second mailer [PDF])

"The mailers are the leading edge of a massive campaign in August to clearly define Sen. Obama among millions of union voters and to contrast the policies and plans of Sen. Obama with those of Sen. [John] McCain," AFL-CIO spokesman Steve Smith said.

That massive campaign will include a large-scale mobilization effort in 24 states, targeting 13 million union voters. The organization will also deliver more than 1 million fliers touting Obama's record at work sites across the country in August.

Filed under: Candidate Barack Obama
soundoff (313 Responses)
  1. solomon the wise

    this is good and very much needed. because as much as the media likes to view obama as the frontrunner, obama truly is the underdog. he has triple the amount of hurdles to jump through than mccain. it is and will always be harder for obama. right up until election day.

    July 29, 2008 02:54 pm at 2:54 pm |
  2. linda from South Dakota

    wow,, this is great,,about time,, somethings is done,,,its time to let people know,,, the truth and kick out the bad ones,,, its also time to un-tap oil storage in this country,, we have enuff oil here to last over 100 years,, its the government that wont let us un-tap them,, and why or who is doin this? give u two guesses and teh first one doesnt count,,lol,,, its time to have more fuel efficient cars here,, in eruope, they have cars that get 80 miles per gallon,, we can start producing these cars and its time to start,,, also lets start being a more self effiecent country and stop dependin on all these other countries to help us out because every favor asks for a favor back, and we have over-extended ourselves here,, obama will try to do thism and it will take time and cooperation from american people,,,, i willin to cooperate,, to an extent but yes,, im willin,,,, my vote still goes to obama,,, these rumors need to stop and we need to move on,,, democrates for 08 and beyond,,,,,,, !!!!!!!!!!!!!!

    July 29, 2008 02:54 pm at 2:54 pm |
  3. Anonymous

    Do you think Mitt Romney is getting a face lift in Canada.
    He is a jerk.

    July 29, 2008 02:54 pm at 2:54 pm |
  4. R-C from NC

    Part of the downfall of this country UNIONS!!!!! They had their place ,but the thieves took over-and America wonder why our jobs go overseas-LOL!!!! Obama-Unions-LIberal Democrats= TAXES-USA down the drain!!!

    July 29, 2008 02:54 pm at 2:54 pm |
  5. jim - chicago, illinois

    The argument/rumor against Mr. Obama that galls me the most is this business about the flag lapel pin (ie, his patriotism.) If this is such a mark of one's patriotism, or lack thereof, why isn't Mr. McCain wearing one? I have searched through countless images online, specific news websites, and websites in general (including Mr. McCain's own!) and have not found one single, solitary picture of him with a flag lapel pin on. Why isn't THAT being held up as a question to his patriotism as it is Mr. Obama?

    July 29, 2008 02:54 pm at 2:54 pm |
  6. Richard

    Tell the truth . . . Barack HUSSEIN Obama is anti-American!
    Those are the facts not lies.

    Some people thinks the DEVIL is good also!

    July 29, 2008 02:55 pm at 2:55 pm |
  7. Gary of El Centro, Ca

    Hard to believe there are actually people out there that still believe this stuff, but then again, in our collective wisdom we voted in GWB (twice!), so best not to take chances. Better shoot this garbage down.

    July 29, 2008 02:55 pm at 2:55 pm |
  8. Kelly - WV


    July 29, 2008 02:55 pm at 2:55 pm |
  9. CD

    Let the trumpet sounding the start of WAR for delivering America from the Republican smear machines be blown.

    July 29, 2008 02:56 pm at 2:56 pm |
  10. seah

    Wow Obama had to promise the Union something powerful to back him like this.

    I know the People need more and better unions again.

    I just do not trust Obama not to break the unions.

    He is a Socialist with all his programs, and that does ride with unions.

    July 29, 2008 02:56 pm at 2:56 pm |
  11. Tsquares

    Lets see who is still talking about the surge even though the war should've never been waged nor authorized.

    Surge, Surge, Surge Surge Surge Surge.........................................

    It's the economy stupid.

    Mcsurge take note.

    July 29, 2008 02:56 pm at 2:56 pm |
  12. PRinNJ

    I think this is fantastic. Whether or not you support Sen Obama, make your decisions based on the issues and real facts, not unsubstantiated rumor. The same thought goes toward Sen McCain. He has been targeted by several smear campaigns that are spreading lies and unproven rumors. There are plenty of real issues to debate. Let's all get together and defeat the slime and smear.

    July 29, 2008 02:56 pm at 2:56 pm |
  13. bill for barack

    It's about time that someone spoke up in defense of the ONLY decent and moral candidate in the Presidential race – Senator Obama.

    John McSame as Bush has consistently proven himself to be dishonest, untrustworthy – as low if not lower than the scum who swift-boated McShame himself in 2000.
    This man is the most unfit, unworthy, most typically Republican candidate since – well, since Bush himself.

    July 29, 2008 02:56 pm at 2:56 pm |
  14. Jim

    Awsome, I'd donate to these guys if I could! Wait let me see if I can...

    July 29, 2008 02:56 pm at 2:56 pm |

    American better wake up and start doing their homework on the candidates. We as a whole is so LAZYYYYYYYYYYYY. Always wanting someone else to educate us on the candidates. It is a no brainer that Obama is the better candidate.

    Sick of folks hiding behind the experience argument. McCain has been in Washington for 30 years plus and what exactly has he done with his SO-CALLED EXPERIENCE??????

    So what is your real reasons for not voting for Obama?????

    July 29, 2008 02:57 pm at 2:57 pm |
  16. Chas in Iowa

    It is a welcome development. I have been constantly reminded by my elder generation of the dangers of Obama not because of his views but because of the trail of lies and deception being strung out by the same folks who brought you the swift boat debacle.

    I'd like to see this election decided by the issues not who has the best propoganda machine.

    July 29, 2008 02:57 pm at 2:57 pm |
  17. tidho

    People know that stuff isn't true. Racists just use it to justify their actions. While a nice gesture, I don't see it moving the needle significantly.

    July 29, 2008 02:58 pm at 2:58 pm |
  18. tony

    Who Cares-!!
    Jesse Ventura is more Qualified to be President-
    When will you Dems recogonize - This guy is like a Pin up Doll-
    I'm a Republican and McCain is not a whole lot better-
    This was the best we could do - Sad !!

    July 29, 2008 02:58 pm at 2:58 pm |
  19. Darryl of Arlington Texas

    Isn't it Good News...

    Obama 08

    It is really interesting that now Senator John McCain is changing his views on taxes..

    July 29, 2008 02:58 pm at 2:58 pm |
  20. Val, Atlanta, Ga

    Please help me to understand why it has not be noted that Sen McCain the war hero the one that LOVES America the POW does not wear a Flag Pin I have never seen him wear one and you don't hear about that in the Media or on the Blog and as far as him putting his hand on his heart for the National Anthem, it was NOT the National Anthem. Please people don't we have more problems in the world than this.

    Obama 08

    July 29, 2008 02:59 pm at 2:59 pm |
  21. Joe Merolla Johnston, RI

    A message to all those Republican Swift Boaters out there..Your boat is at the bottom of the political ocean..Say hi to Davey Jones..

    July 29, 2008 02:59 pm at 2:59 pm |
  22. Peter


    July 29, 2008 02:59 pm at 2:59 pm |
  23. Fran

    If he places his hand over his heart during the national anthem, then how do you explain the pictures of him doing so (or in the case, "not doing so").

    July 29, 2008 02:59 pm at 2:59 pm |
  24. David, Silver Spring, MD

    So the AFL-CIO is going to have to spend millions trying to counter rumors circulated at a cost of pennies through email spam programs and right-wing zealot volunteer smear campaigns.

    Imagine how much money we all could save if folks took their politics seriously and didn't capriciously traffic in smears.

    July 29, 2008 02:59 pm at 2:59 pm |
  25. tony

    I Believe he is a Christian in Rev. Wright's hate Church-
    Smart move AFL-CIO–
    Let's bring that one up again–

    July 29, 2008 02:59 pm at 2:59 pm |
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