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Freedom's defense fund attack ad tries to link Obama, Kilpatrick
The 30-second ad uses audio and video from a May 2007 appearance Obama made before the Detroit Economic Club at which he is introduced by Kilpatrick and, in turn, describes Kilpatrick as "your great mayor," "a friend," etc. Obama's praise then plays over a police mug shot of the mayor as a list of the criminal charges against him scrolls down the screen.
Todd Zirkle, executive director of the group behind the ad, Freedom's Defense Fund, said Friday it will run on Macomb County cable channels for at least seven days at a cost of about $25,000.
The county was targeted because its voters will be key to deciding the election in Michigan, Zirkle said.
Zirkle said the group opposes what it says is Obama's plan to expand government and restrict economic liberty and individual freedom, but targeted his association with Kilpatrick because it was the most effective way to question his judgment.
Obama's spokesman in Michigan, Brent Colburn, said in a statement the ad is an example of "the same old desperate, cynical Washington-style political attacks."
The Economic Club event was "long before the mayor's troubles began," and Obama called on Kilpatrick to resign after the text message scandal broke.
Zirkle said Kilpatrick's "ethical lapses were well known" by 2007 and pointed out that Obama did not call for the resignation until months after the mayor was accused of multiple felonies.
Obama actually called on Kilpatrick to resign less than 24 hours before the mayor pleaded guilty to two felony charges and turned in his resignation.
Ironically, Obama's relationship to Kilpatrick even in 2007 was less than entirely cordial.
As reported by the Free Press the day of Obama's appearance, the two had had a testy exchange on the telephone before the meeting. Kilpatrick did not endorse Obama in the presidential primary season.
The Economic Club footage has been circulating on the Internet for weeks and was used in another attack-type ad, which was apparently available only online, in August by Tennessee Republicans.
A spokeswoman for Obama's Republican opponent John McCain said she had not seen the ad and had no immediate comment.
To view the ad, go to: http://www.freedomsdefensefund.com/videos.html
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