Democratic Underground Latest Greatest Lobby Journals Search Options Help Login
Google

Kerry calls out Fitzpatrick for smearing vet Patrick Murphy

Printer-friendly format Printer-friendly format
Printer-friendly format Email this thread to a friend
Printer-friendly format Bookmark this thread
This topic is archived.
Home » Discuss » Archives » General Discussion: Presidential (Through Nov 2009) Donate to DU
 
blm Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sun Oct-08-06 10:04 AM
Original message
Kerry calls out Fitzpatrick for smearing vet Patrick Murphy
John Kerry: "Mike Fitzpatrick is Engaged in the Lowest Form of Smear"


Levittown, PA Senator John Kerry, a decorated Vietnam War veteran, released the following statement on Congressman Mike Fitzpatricks attempt to swiftboat the military record of Patrick Murphy:

I wont stand for the swift boating of Patrick Murphy. It disgusts me that a congressman who has never worn the uniform of our country stands there in silence as a veteran home from Iraq has his service disparaged.

No one who has ever served would tolerate this kind of slander about a fellow veteran. In 2000, George Bush stood in silence while John McCains service was questioned. It was wrong then, it is wrong now for Mike Fitzpatrick to engage in the same double-speak. What is it these Republicans who never served have against Democrats who did?

I have news for Mike Fitzpatrick. In war, bullets dont differentiate between lawyers and medics, enlisted men and officers.

You know why Mike Fitzpatrick is engaged in the lowest form of smear and fear politics? Because hes afraid of actually debating Patrick Murphy about the disastrous war in Iraq. Hes afraid to debate a veteran who lives and breathes the concerns of our troops, not the empty slogans of an Administration that sent our brave troops to war without body armor. Hes terrified of actually leveling with the American people about the way the administration misled America into war, and admitting their stay the course slogans just guarantee more Americans die for a stand still and lose strategy.

Mike Fitzpatrick should finally find the courage to debate the real issue instead of cowardly having his surrogates try to destroy anyone who speaks truth to power. Its unacceptable to do this to any leader of any party anywhere in our country.
http://www.murphy06.net/press.php?id=67
Printer Friendly | Permalink |  | Top
seabeyond Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sun Oct-08-06 10:12 AM
Response to Original message
1. good on kerry. i DO like this man n/t
Printer Friendly | Permalink |  | Top
 
rodeodance Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sun Oct-08-06 10:14 AM
Response to Original message
2. yo kerry. Keep it the talkback!
Printer Friendly | Permalink |  | Top
 
babylonsister Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sun Oct-08-06 10:19 AM
Response to Original message
3. Thank you, Senator Kerry!
I really wish someone of Kerry's stature had defended him when he was being swift-boated.
Printer Friendly | Permalink |  | Top
 
blm Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sun Oct-08-06 12:08 PM
Response to Reply #3
9. That's the thing - whenever ANY vet got smeared, Kerry was always first to
come out and hit back for them and he would organize the other vets to join him - he did this for YEARS.
Printer Friendly | Permalink |  | Top
 
Greyhound Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sun Oct-08-06 02:32 PM
Response to Reply #9
17. Hear, hear!
Standing up when it counts is all that counts. :kick:
Printer Friendly | Permalink |  | Top
 
MH1 Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sun Oct-08-06 09:53 PM
Response to Reply #9
27. Even vets that haven't always been on the same page as him
Like Webb or Murtha for example.
Printer Friendly | Permalink |  | Top
 
JohnnyLib2 Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sun Oct-08-06 10:20 AM
Response to Original message
4. Smack 'em, John Kerry.

Use that anger!
Printer Friendly | Permalink |  | Top
 
Joe Chi Minh Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sun Oct-08-06 01:26 PM
Response to Reply #4
12. It reads really well, and I bet it sounded even better. Nothing like
righteous anger levelled against shamelessly iniquitous behaviour by those in authority. Especially, when they are so fond of simulating righteous anger! Trouble is, they need to be righteous in the first place, and there sure don't seem to be many areas where that obtains.
Printer Friendly | Permalink |  | Top
 
rubberducky Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sun Oct-08-06 10:20 AM
Response to Original message
5. Sure do wish Kerry would have talked like this in 04!
Printer Friendly | Permalink |  | Top
 
blm Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sun Oct-08-06 10:41 AM
Response to Reply #5
7. Sure wish other Dems had stuck their necks out for JK the way he ALWAYS
Edited on Sun Oct-08-06 10:41 AM by blm
does for others.

And when Kerry personally attacked the swifts himself, the corporate media didn't even report it, let alone air the speech at the Firefighters Convention
Printer Friendly | Permalink |  | Top
 
babylonsister Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sun Oct-08-06 10:47 AM
Response to Reply #7
8. Amen to that, blm! nt
Printer Friendly | Permalink |  | Top
 
Joe Chi Minh Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sun Oct-08-06 01:29 PM
Response to Reply #5
13. You don't think his family might have been threatened? Did you
read about Carville telling his wife John intended not to cede the election? Now what do you think might have persuaded a man of such proven bravery to change his mind?
Printer Friendly | Permalink |  | Top
 
sandnsea Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sun Oct-08-06 02:17 PM
Response to Reply #5
15. We should have supplied Dems with Q-tips
So they could hear what the man said.


"The Bush campaign and its allies have turned to the tactics of fear and smear because they can't talk about jobs, health care, energy independence and rebuilding our alliances,"

..My duty is to be a president who tells the truth instead of hiding behind front groups, saying anything and doing anything to avoid the real issues that matter, like jobs, health care and the war in Iraq."


http://www.cnn.com/2004/ALLPOLITICS/08/24/kerry/
Printer Friendly | Permalink |  | Top
 
blm Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Mon Oct-09-06 01:38 PM
Response to Reply #15
30. Here's MORE that too many Dems just couldn't seem to notice because media
wasn't allowing them to see it.


April 14, 2004 - The website for SBVT was registered under the name of Lewis Waterman, the information technology manager for Gannon International, a St. Louis company that has diversified interests, including in Vietnam. (1) (note - Gannon International does not appear to have any relationship to Jeff Gannon/Guckert, the fake reporter.)

May 3, 2004 - "Kerry campaign announced a major advertising push to introduce 'John Kerry's lifetime of service and strength to the American people.' Kerry's four month Vietnam experience figures prominently in the ads." (2)

May 4, 2004 - The Swift Liars, beginning their lies by calling themselves "Swift Boat Veterans for Truth", went public at a news conference organized by Merrie Spaeth at the National Press Club. (1)

May 4, 2004 - "The Kerry campaign held a press conference directly after the "Swift Boat Veterans for Truth" event...The campaign provided an information package which raised significant questions about 'Swift Boat Veterans for Truth.' " (3)


May 4, 2004 - Aug. 5, 2004 - No public activity by Swift Liars (?) Wikipedia entry (7) notes "When the press conference garnered little attention, the organization decided to produce television advertisements." (Ed. note - were there any public info or announcements, other than talk on blogs? Was there anything going on publicly? Did the campaign have reason to foresee what was coming - note that they must have, see the reactions to each ad).

Jul. 26, 2004 - Jul. 29, 2004 - Democratic National Convention held in Boston. John Kerry's military experience is highlighted.

Aug. 5, 2004 - The Swift Liars' first television ad began airing a one-minute television spot in three states. (7)

Aug. 5, 2004 - "the General Counsels to the DNC and the Kerry-Edwards 2004 campaign faxed a letter to station managers at the relevant stations stating that the ad is 'an inflammatory, outrageous lie" and requesting that they "act immediately to prevent broadcast of this advertisement and deny any future sale of time. " ' " (4)

Aug. 10, 2004 - Democracy 21, The Campaign Legal Center and The Center for Responsive Politics filed a complaint with the Federal Election Commission (FEC) charging that the Swift Liars were illegally raising and spending soft money on ads to influence the 2004 presidential elections. (4)

Aug. 17, 2004 - the campaign held a press conference at which Gen. Wesley Clark (ret.), Adm. Stansfield Turner (ret.), and several swift boat veterans rebutted the charges. (4)

Aug. 19, 2004 - the Kerry-Edwards campaign announced its own ad "Rassmann." (4)

Aug. 20, 2004 - The Swift Liars' second television ad began airing. This ad selectively excerpted Kerry's statements to the SFRC on 4/22/1971. (7)

Aug. 22, 2004 - the Kerry-Edwards campaign announced another ad "Issues" which addressed the Swift Boat group's attacks.

Aug. 25, 2004 - The Kerry-Edwards campaign ... dispatched former Sen. Max Cleland and Jim Rassmann, to Bush's ranch in Crawford, Texas to deliver to the President a letter signed by Democratic Senators who are veterans. (The letter was not accepted.) (4)

Aug. 26, 2004 - The Swift Liars' third television ad began airing. This ad attacked Kerry's claim to have been in Cambodia in 1968. (7)

August 26, 2004 - Mary Beth Cahill sends letter to Ken Mehlman detailing the "Web of Connections" between the Swift Liars and the Bush Administration, and demanding that Bush denounce the smear campaign. (5)

August 26, 2004 - Citizens for Responsibility and Ethics in Washington (CREW) submits FOIA request "with the White House asking it to detail its contacts with individuals connected to Swift Boat Veterans for Truth (SBVT)." (6)

Aug. 27, 2004 - The DNC ran a full page ad in the Aug. 27, 2004 New York Times terming the Swift Boat campaign a smear. (4)

Aug. 31, 2004 - - The Swift Liars' fourth television ad began airing. This ad attacked Kerry's participation in the medal-throwing protest on 4/23/1971. (7)

References:
* (1) SourceWatch article on SBVT

* (2) (2004) Democracy in Action / Eric M. Appleman, Democracy in Action / Eric M. Appleman

* (3) (2004) Democracy in Action / Eric M. Appleman, Swift Boat Veterans for Truth: Kerry Campaign Response

* (4) (Sept. 8, 2004) Eric M. Appleman (apparently) Some Responses to the "Swift Boat Veterans for Truth" Ad

* (5) August 26, 2004 letter from Mary Beth Cahill to Ken Mehlman

* (6) Press Release (US Newswire): CREW FOIAs White House Contacts with Swift Boat Veterans Group

* (7) Wikipedia entry, Swift Vets and POWs for Truth



MH1 - This topic is to create a timeline of the response of the K/E04 campaign to the Swift Liars' smears. There is an RW-encouraged myth that K/E04 "didn't respond." As the timeline, once completed, will show, that is not true. Effectiveness of the response may be debated - that is subjective - the purpose of this thread is to collect the facts of the events.




On Aug. 19, 2004 Kerry himself responded directly in a speech to the International Association of Firefighters' Convention in Boston. (from prepared remarks)
...And more than thirty years ago, I learned an important lessonwhen you're under attack, the best thing to do is turn your boat into the attacker. That's what I intend to do today.

Over the last week or so, a group called Swift Boat Veterans for Truth has been attacking me. Of course, this group isnt interested in the truth and they're not telling the truth. They didn't even exist until I won the nomination for president.

But here's what you really need to know about them. They're funded by hundreds of thousands of dollars from a Republican contributor out of Texas. They're a front for the Bush campaign. And the fact that the President won't denounce what theyre up to tells you everything you need to knowhe wants them to do his dirty work.

Thirty years ago, official Navy reports documented my service in Vietnam and awarded me the Silver Star, the Bronze Star and three Purple Hearts. Thirty years ago, this was the plain truth. It still is. And I still carry the shrapnel in my leg from a wound in Vietnam.

As firefighters you risk your lives everyday. You know what its like to see the truth in the moment. You're proud of what youve doneand so am I.

Of course, the President keeps telling people he would never question my service to our country. Instead, he watches as a Republican-funded attack group does just that. Well, if he wants to have a debate about our service in Vietnam, here is my answer: "Bring it on."

I'm not going to let anyone question my commitment to defending Americathen, now, or ever. And I'm not going to let anyone attack the sacrifice and courage of the men who saw battle with me.

And let me make this commitment today: their lies about my record will not stop me from fighting for jobs, health care, and our security the issues that really matter to the American people...



Kerry defends war record
Aug. 19: John Kerry responds directly to attacks on his Vietnam military service Thursday, accusing President Bush of relying on front groups to challenge his war record.

http://video.msn.com/v/us/v.htm?g=40a0d9b1-0386-41ef-bc ...



May 4, 2004. The Kerry campaign held a press conference directly after the "Swift Boat Veterans for Truth" event. (Above are, r-l, Wade Sanders, Del Sandusky and Drew Whitlow). Senior Advisor Michael Meehan said, "The Nixon White House attempted to do this to Kerry, and the Bush folks are following the same plan." "We're not going to let them make false claims about Kerry and go unanswered," Meehan said. He said his first instinct was to hold a press conference with an empty room where veterans could testify to their time spent in the military with George W. Bush and Dick Cheney.

The campaign provided an information package which raised significant questions about "Swift Boat Veterans for Truth." Spaeth Communications, which hosted the event, "is a Republican headed firm from Texas which has contributed to Bush's campaign and has very close ties to the Bush Administration." Lead organizer John O'Neill, a Republican from Texas, "was a pawn of the Nixon White House in 1971." Further some of the people now speaking against Kerry had praised him in their evaluation reports in Vietnam.

John Dibble, who served on a swift boat in 1970, after Kerry had left, was one of the veterans at the Kerry event. He said of Kerry's anti-war activities that at the time, "I didn't like what he was doing." In retrospect, however, Dibble said, "I probably should have been doing the same thing...probably more of us should have been doing that." He said that might have meant fewer names on the Vietnam Memorial and that Kerry's anti-war activities were "a very gutsy thing to do."

http://www.gwu.edu/~action/2004/interestg/swift050404c ....



Kerry campaign's quick response to Swift boat vets
By Marie Horrigan
UPI Deputy Americas Editor
Washington, DC, Aug. 5 (UPI) -- The campaign for Democratic Party presidential nominee Sen. John Kerry of Massachusetts issued an exhaustively researched and extensively sourced 36-page refutation Thursday of allegations Kerry lied about events during his service in Vietnam, including how and why he received medals, and had fled the scene of a battle.

http://washingtontimes.com/upi-breaking/20040805-012143 ...



Kerry: Bush lets attack ads do 'dirty work'
McClellan points out criticism by anti-Bush group
Friday, August 20, 2004 Posted: 2:37 PM EDT (1837 GMT)
BOSTON, Massachusetts (CNN) -- Democratic presidential nominee John Kerry accused President Bush on Thursday of letting front groups "do his dirty work" in questioning his military service during the Vietnam War.

"The president keeps telling people he would never question my service to our country. Instead, he watches as a Republican-funded attack group does just that," Kerry told a firefighters' union conference in his hometown of Boston.

"Well, if he wants to have a debate about our service in Vietnam, here is my answer: Bring it on."

http://www.cnn.com/2004/ALLPOLITICS/08/19/kerry.attacka ... /


http://www.johnkerry.com/petition/oldtricks.php




August 5, 2004

VIA FACSIMILE

Re: Swift Boat Veterans for Truth

Dear Station Manager:

We are counsel to the Democratic National Committee and John Kerry, respectively. It has been brought to our attention that a group calling itself "Swift Boat Veterans for Truth" has bought time, or may seek to buy time, on your station to air an advertisement that attacks Senator Kerry. The advertisement contains statements by men who purport to have served on Senator Kerry's SWIFT Boat in Vietnam, and one statement by a man pretending to be the doctor who treated Senator Kerry for one of his injuries. In fact, not a single one of the men who pretend to have served with Senator Kerry was actually a crewmate of Senator Kerry's and the man pretending to be his doctor was not. The entire advertisement, therefore is an inflammatory, outrageous lie.

"Swift Boat Veterans for Truth" styles itself as a group of individuals who personally served with John Kerry in the United States Navy in the Vietnam War. In truth the group is a sham organization spearheaded by a Texas corporate media consultant. It has been financed largely with funds from a Houston homebuilder. See Slater, Dallas Morning News, July 23, 2004.

In this group's advertisement, twelve men appear to make statements about Senator Kerry's service in Vietnam. Not a single one of these men served on either of Senator Kerry's two SWIFT Boats (PCF 44 & PCF94).

Further, the "doctor" who appears in the ad, Louis Letson, was not a crewmate of Senator Kerry's and was not the doctor who actually signed Senator Kerry's sick call sheet. In fact, another physician actually signed Senator Kerry's sick call sheet. Letson is not listed on any document as having treated Senator Kerry after the December 2, 1968 firefight. Moreover, according to news accounts, Letson did not record his "memories" of that incident until after Senator Kerry became a candidate for President in 2003. (National Review Online, May 4, 2004).

The statements made by the phony "crewmates" and "doctor" who appear in the advertisement are also totally, demonstrably and unequivocally false, and libelous. In parrticular, the advertisement charges that Senator Kerry "lied to get his Bronze Star." Just as falsely, it states that "he lied before the Senate." These are serious allegations of actual crimes -- specifically, of lying to the United States Government in the conduct of its official business. The events for which the Senator was awarded the Bronze Star have been documented repeatedly and in detail and are set out in the official citation signed by the Secretary of the Navy and the Commander of U.S. Forces in Vietnam. And yet these reckless charges of criminal conduct are offered without support or authentication, by fake "witnesses" speaking on behalf of a phony organization.

Your station is not obligated to accept this advertisement for broadcast nor is it required to account in any way for its decision to reject such an advertisement. Columbia Broadcasting System v. Democratic National Committee, 412 U.S. 94 (1973), You Can't Afford Dodd Committee, 81 FCC2d 579 (1980). The so-called "Swift Boat Veterans" organization is not a federal candidate or candidate committee. Repeated efforts by organizations that are not candidate committees to obtain a private right of access have been consistently rejected by the FCC. See e.g., National Conservative Political Action Committee, 89 FCC2d 626 (1982).

Thus, your station my freely refuse this advertisement. Because your station has this freedom, and because it is not a "use" of your facilities by a clearly identified candidate, your station is responsible for the false and libelous charges made by this sponsor.

Moreover, as a licensee, you have an overriding duty "to protect the public from false, misleading or deceptive advertising." Licensee Responsibility With Respect to the Broadcast of False, Misleading or Deceptive Advertising, 74 F.C.D.2d 623 (1961). Your station normally must take "reasonable steps" to satisfy itself "as to the reliability and reputation of every prospective advertiser." In re Complaint by Consumers Assocation of District of Columbia, 32 F.C.C.2d 400, 405 (1971).

Under these circumstances, your station may not responsibly air this advertisement. We request that your station act immmediately to prevent broadcasts of this advertisement and deny andy future sale of time. Knowing that the advertisement is false, and possessing the legal authority to refuse to run it, your station should exercise that authority in the public interest.


Please contact us promptly at either of the phone numbers below to advise us regarding the status of this advertisement.

Sincerely yours,
Marc Elias
Perkins Coie
607 14th Street, N.W.
Washington, D.C. 20005


General Counsel
Kerry-Edwards 2004 Joseph Sandler
Sandler, Reiff & Young
50 E Street, S.E. #300
Washington, D.C. 20003


General Counsel
Democratic National Committee


http://www.gwu.edu/~action/2004/ads04/dem080504ltrswift ...




From the transcript of the Aug. 5, 2004 White House Press Briefing with Scott McClellan:

Q Do you -- does the President repudiate this 527 ad that calls Kerry a liar on Vietnam?

MR. McCLELLAN: The President deplores all the unregulated soft money activity. We have been very clear in stating that, you know, we will not -- and we have not and we will not question Senator Kerry's service in Vietnam. I think that this is another example of the problem with the unregulated soft money activity that is going on. The President thought he put an end -- or the President thought he got rid of this kind of unregulated soft money when he signed the bipartisan campaign finance reforms into law. And, you know, the President has been on the receiving end of more than $62 million in negative attacks from shadowy groups.

* * *

In the days after the release of the ad a host of major newspapers published editorials condemning it including the Arizona Republic ("Campaign Non-Starter," August 6), Los Angeles Times ("It's Not All Fair Game," August 6), Plain Dealer ("Ad Says Kerry Lied; Record Says Otherwise," August 8), St. Petersburg Times ("An Ugly Attack," August 9), Las Vegas Sun ("Ad's Smear Should Be Condemned," August 9), Oregonian ("Now It Gets Nasty," August 11), and Washington Post ("Swift Boat Smears," August 12).

* * *

On Aug. 10, 2004 Democracy 21, the Campaign Legal Center and the Center for Responsive Politics filed a complaint with the Federal Election Commission (FEC) charging that Swift Boat Veterans for Truth is illegally raising and spending soft money on ads to influence the 2004 presidential elections.

* * *

From the transcript of Bush's Aug. 12, 2004 appearance on CNN'S Larry King Live:


KING: In view of that, do you think that it's fair, for the record, John Kerry's service record, to be an issue at all? I know that Senator McCain...
G. BUSH: You know, I think it is an issue, because he views it as honorable service, and so do I. I mean...
KING: Oh, so it is. But, I mean, Senator McCain has asked to be condemned, the attack on his service. What do you say to that?
G. BUSH: Well, I say they ought to get rid of all those 527s, independent expenditures that have flooded the airwaves.
There have been millions of dollars spent up until this point in time. I signed a law that I thought would get rid of
those, and I called on the senator to -- let's just get anybody who feels like they got to run to not do so.
KING: Do you condemn the statements made about his...
G. BUSH: Well, I haven't seen the ad, but what I do condemn is these unregulated, soft-money expenditures by very wealthy people, and they've said some bad things about me. I guess they're saying bad things about him. And what I think we ought to do is not have them on the air. I think there ought to be full disclosure. The campaign funding law I signed I thought was going to get rid of that. But evidently the Federal Election Commission had a different view...

Kerry spokesman Chad Clanton's response to Bush's Aug. 12, 2004 appearance:
"Tonight President Bush called Kerry's service in Vietnam 'noble.' But in the same breath refused to heed Senator McCain's call to condemn the dirty work being done by the 'Swift Boat Vets for Bush.' Once again, the President side-stepped responsibility and refused to do the right thing. His credibility is running out as fast as his time in the White House."

* * *

On Aug. 17, 2004 the campaign held a press conference at which Gen. Wesley Clark (ret.), Adm. Stansfield Turner (ret.), and several swift boat veterans rebutted the charges.

* * *

DNC Chairman Terry McAuliffe issued a statement on Aug. 18, 2004:

"By saying nothing at all George W. Bush is a complicit contributor to the slanderous, lie-filled attack ads that have been launched on John Kerry on Bush's behalf. Instead of stepping up and taking the high road, George Bush's response has been evasion, avoidance, everything but disavowal.

"Larry King asked George Bush to 'condemn' it. He refused. Reporters asked the President's Press Secretary if he'd 'repudiate' it. He ducked. They can try to blame it on the rules or whoever else they want, but the blame belongs squarely on the Republicans. They wrote it. They produced it. They placed it. They paid for it. And now it is time for George W. Bush to stand up and say, 'enough.'

"This is not debate, Mr. President, and this unfounded attack on Senator Kerry has crossed the line of decency. I call on you today to condemn this ad, the men who put their lies behind it, and the donors who paid for it. It's time."

http://www.gwu.edu/~action/2004/ads04/swiftadresponse.h ...



Altercation Book Club: Lapdogs by Eric Boehlert
Relatively early on in the August coverage of the Swift Boat Veterans for Truth story, ABC's Nightline devoted an entire episode to the allegations and reported, "The Kerry campaign calls the charges wrong, offensive and politically motivated. And points to Naval records that seemingly contradict the charges." (Emphasis added.) Seemingly? A more accurate phrasing would have been that Navy records "completely" or "thoroughly" contradicted the Swifty. In late August, CNN's scrawl across the bottom of the screen read, "Several Vietnam veterans are backing Kerry's version of events." Again, a more factual phrasing would have been "Crewmembers have always backed Kerry's version of events." But that would have meant not only having to stand up a well-funded Republican campaign attack machine, but also casting doubt on television news' hottest political story of the summer.

When the discussion did occasionally turn to the facts behind the Swift Boat allegations, reporters and pundits seemed too spooked to address the obviousthat the charges made no sense and there was little credible evidence to support them.. Substituting as host of "Meet the Press," Andrea Mitchell on Aug. 15 pressed Boston Globe reporter Anne Kornblut about the facts surrounding Kerry's combat service: "Well, Anne, you've covered him for many years, John Kerry. What is the truth of his record?" Instead of mentioning some of the glaring inconsistencies in the Swifties' allegation, such as George Elliott and Adrian Lonsdale 's embarrassing flip-flops, Kornblut ducked the question, suggesting the truth was "subjective": "The truth of his record, the criticism that's coming from the Swift Boat ads, is that he betrayed his fellow veterans. Well, that's a subjective question, that he came back from the war and then protested it. So, I mean, that is truly something that's subjective." Ten days later Kornblut scored a sit-down interview with O'Neill. In her 1,200-word story she politely declined to press O'Neill about a single factual inconsistency surrounding the Swifties' allegations, thereby keeping her Globe readers in the dark about the Swift Boat farce. (It was not until Bush was safely re-elected that that Kornblut, appearing on MSNBC, conceded the Swift Boast ads were clearly inaccurate.)

Hosting an Aug. 28 discussion on CNBC with Newsweek's Jon Meacham and Time's Jay Carney, NBC's Tim Russert finally, after weeks of overheated Swifty coverage, got around to asking the pertinent question: "Based on everything you have heard, seen, reported, in terms of the actual charges, the content of the book, is there any validity to any of it?" Carney conceded the charges did not have any validity, but did it oh, so gently: "I think it's hard to say that any one of them is by any standard that we measure these things has been substantiated." Apparently Carney forgot to pass the word along to editors at Time magazine, which is read by significantly more news consumers than Russert's weekly cable chat show on CNBC. Because it wasn't until its Sept. 20 2004 issue, well after the Swift Boat controversy had peaked, that the Time news team managed enough courage to tentatively announce the charges levied against Kerry and his combat service were "reckless and unfair." (Better late than never; Time's competitor Newsweek waited until after the election to report the Swift Boat charges were "misleading," but "very effective.") But even then, Time didn't hold the Swifties responsible for their "reckless and unfair" charges. Instead, Time celebrated them. Typing up an election postscript in November, Time toasted the Swift Boat's O'Neill as one of the campaign's "Winners," while remaining dutifully silent about the group's fraudulent charges.

That kind of Beltway media group self-censorship was evident throughout the Swift Boat story, as the perimeters of acceptable reporting were quickly established. Witness the MSM reaction to Wayne Langhofer, Jim Russell and Robert Lambert. All three men served with Kerry in Vietnam and all three men were witnesses to the disputed March 13, 1969 event in which Kerry rescued Green Beret Jim Rassmann, winning a Bronze Star and his third Purple Heart. The Swifties, after 35 years of silence, insisted Kerry did nothing special that day, and that he certainly did not come under enemy fire when he plucked Rassmann out of the drink. Therefore, Kerry did not deserve his honors.

It's true every person on Kerry's boat, along with the thankful Rassmann, insisted they were under fire, and so did the official Navy citation for Kerry's Bronze Star. Still, Swifties held to their unlikely story, and the press pretended to be confused about the stand-off. Then during the last week in August three more eyewitnesses, all backing the Navy's version of events that there had been hostile gun fire, stepped forward. They were Langhofer, Russell and Lambert.

Russell wrote an indignant letter to his local Telluride Daily Planet to dispute the Swifties' claim: "Forever pictured in my mind since that day over 30 years ago John Kerry bending over his boat picking up one of the rangers that we were ferrying from out of the water. All the time we were taking small arms fire from the beach; although because of our fusillade into the jungle, I don't think it was very accurate, thank God. Anyone who doesn't think that we were being fired upon must have been on a different river."

The number of times Russell was subsequently mentioned on CNN: 1. On Fox News: 1. MSNBC: 0. ABC: 1. On CBS: 0. On NBC: 0.

Like Russell, Langhofer also remembered strong enemy gunfire that day. An Aug. 22 article in the Washington Post laid out the details: "Until now, eyewitness evidence supporting Kerry's version had come only from his own crewmen. But yesterday, The Post independently contacted a participant who has not spoken out so far in favor of either camp who remembers coming under enemy fire. There was a lot of firing going on, and it came from both sides of the river, said Wayne D. Langhofer, who manned a machine gun aboard PCF-43, the boat that was directly behind Kerrys. Langhofer said he distinctly remembered the clack, clack, clack of enemy AK-47s, as well as muzzle flashes from the riverbanks." (For some strange reason the Post buried its Langhofer scoop in the 50th paragraph of the story.)

The number of times Langhofer was subsequently mentioned on CNN: 0. On Fox News: 0. On MSNBC: 0. On ABC: 0. CBS: 0. NBC: 0.

As for Lambert, The Nation magazine uncovered the official citation for the Bronze Medal he won that same day and it too reported the flotilla of five U.S. boats "came under small-arms and automatic weapons fire from the river banks."

The number of times Lambert was mentioned on. On Fox News: 1. On CNN: 0. On MSNBC: 0. ABC: 1 On CBS: 0. On NBC: 0.

Additionally, the Washington Post's Michael Dobbs, who served as the paper's point person on the Swifty scandal, was asked during an Aug. 30, 2004, online chat with readers why the paper hadn't reported more aggressively on the public statements of Langhofer, Russell and Lambert. Dobbs insisted, "I hope to return to this subject at some point to update readers." But he never did. Post readers, who were deluged with Swifty reporting, received just the sketchiest of facts about Langhofer, Russell and Lambert.

If that doesn't represent a concerted effort by the press to look the other way, than what does?

http://www.msnbc.msn.com/id/12799378/#060518



Please use this information as a guideline for 2006 and 2008 campaigns. What the media edits out of our campaigns is CRUCIAL to public perception.

Even many Democrats are unaware of the real fight that occurred in 2004 and are buying wholesale the corporate media spin which conveniently protects the corporate media who failed to give honest coverage of Kerry's defense against the lies of the swift vets and their Republican handlers.

Not recognizing the extent of the corporate media's duplicity is a danger for all Democratic candidates in 2006 and 2008.

This can and WILL happen to any Democratic candidate.

This CAN and WILL happen to ANY Democratic candidate. FIGHT THE MYTHS. Stay tough KNOWING the media is aligned with these liars.

The battle with the people really behind this group will never end. But there are veterans coming forth with a book of their own that will unmask the swifts for the lying GOP operatives they are.
Printer Friendly | Permalink |  | Top
 
SaveElmer Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Mon Oct-09-06 04:10 PM
Response to Reply #5
33. But he has obviously learned from his own campaign...which is why
I would not be worried if he was the nominee again - as some here are. Better in my mind to have someone who has been through the experience of being trashed by the RW sleaze machine...my candidate is Hillary...but on this score, Kerry certainly has learned from his experience!
Printer Friendly | Permalink |  | Top
 
Kierkegaard Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sun Oct-08-06 10:31 AM
Response to Original message
6. Great phrase:
"...a stand still and lose strategy..."
Printer Friendly | Permalink |  | Top
 
Eric J in MN Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sun Oct-08-06 12:11 PM
Response to Original message
10. Republican Mike Fitzpatrick introduced "DOPA."
DOPA is a bill against the website "MySpace" which stops minors from visiting there from public libraries. It passed the House.

If it passes the Senate, the effect will be that rich and middle-class kids can still talk to their friends on MySpace from home, but poor kids are cut out of that social interaction.

http://www.murphy06.net/index.php
Printer Friendly | Permalink |  | Top
 
starroute Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sun Oct-08-06 01:18 PM
Response to Original message
11. The GOP has been dumping money into this district
Over $600,000, according to something I saw last night -- it sure explains why we've been getting slick, anti-Patrick Murphy items in the mail every couple of days. Murphy seems to be getting the national support he needs -- but a little cash to answer the Fitzpatrick smears on the grassroots level wouldn't hurt either.
Printer Friendly | Permalink |  | Top
 
blm Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sun Oct-08-06 01:58 PM
Response to Reply #11
14. Thanks for the heads up.
I sent some bucks a while back when Kerry emailed - looks like it's time to up it. I didn't realize the GOPs were putting so much national money in the race.
Printer Friendly | Permalink |  | Top
 
Jeffersons Ghost Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sun Oct-08-06 02:20 PM
Response to Original message
16. You're still in great form, blm... nice OP! you should be decorated...
just like our other American heroes have been "decorated" over the years. I'm fresh out of medals, so I'll "decorate" your OP instead.
Printer Friendly | Permalink |  | Top
 
blm Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sun Oct-08-06 02:56 PM
Response to Reply #16
19. I had nothing to do with it - - just the mailman on this one.
But,, it sure is nice to see you Ghost.
Printer Friendly | Permalink |  | Top
 
rep the dems Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sun Oct-08-06 02:35 PM
Response to Original message
18. Mike Fitzpatrick will be coming to my school for a political science
meeting sometime this month. I'm going to have a few questions for him regarding this.
Printer Friendly | Permalink |  | Top
 
blm Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sun Oct-08-06 02:58 PM
Response to Reply #18
20. Good - check out all the info you need from Patriot Project - they have
Edited on Sun Oct-08-06 02:59 PM by blm
a defense project operating and they can help you prepare.

http://www.patriotproject.com/
Printer Friendly | Permalink |  | Top
 
rep the dems Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sun Oct-08-06 08:39 PM
Response to Reply #20
25. Thank you very much.
Fitzpatrick probably doesn't expect a high school student to go on the attack against him. He'll be surprised.
Printer Friendly | Permalink |  | Top
 
karynnj Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sun Oct-08-06 09:09 PM
Response to Reply #25
26. You are fantastic to be so informed in high school
Good luck
Printer Friendly | Permalink |  | Top
 
rep the dems Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Mon Oct-09-06 10:59 PM
Response to Reply #26
39. Thank you
:toast:
Printer Friendly | Permalink |  | Top
 
bobbieinok Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sun Oct-08-06 03:15 PM
Response to Reply #18
21. will opponent???? if not, time for some questioning of instructor,
department chair, administrators......
Printer Friendly | Permalink |  | Top
 
blm Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sun Oct-08-06 03:19 PM
Response to Reply #21
22. oh yeah...the equal time thing...easy to forget since we've rarely seen it
the last ten years. It's almost become antiquated - as intended.

Printer Friendly | Permalink |  | Top
 
rep the dems Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sun Oct-08-06 08:29 PM
Response to Reply #21
23. Don't worry, Patrick Murphy already visited .
I think most of the people in the club are pretty liberal, and the sponsor was my old social studies teacher who is a moderate conservative, but is much more fair minded and intelligent than most of them.
Printer Friendly | Permalink |  | Top
 
blm Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Mon Oct-09-06 11:12 AM
Response to Reply #23
28. Give us a full report back -
Would love to hear your question when you craft it.
Printer Friendly | Permalink |  | Top
 
rep the dems Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Mon Oct-09-06 06:11 PM
Response to Reply #28
36. Will do!
Printer Friendly | Permalink |  | Top
 
JPZenger Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sun Oct-08-06 08:37 PM
Response to Original message
24. Reminds Me of Another House race
Edited on Sun Oct-08-06 08:38 PM by JPZenger
In about 1992, in PA, there was a spiteful archconservative Repub. House member named Don Ritter. He was running against Paul McHale, a popular State legislator who had just done a tour of duty as a Marine Reservist Colonel in the first Gulf War. McHale was a political boy scout and refused to publicize his service in the War.

Then Ritter's people started a whisper campaign claiming that McHale had "spent the war serving coffee to generals." That was so idiotic because Colonels don't serve coffee to anyone. However, the attacks opened up the door for people to talk about McHale's high-quality service in a popular and very successful war.

McHale won by a large margin. He could have had the seat for life if he wanted, but he walked away a few years later and was replaced by another Reichwinger, Toomey. (Now McHale is a top official in Homeland Security.)
Printer Friendly | Permalink |  | Top
 
blm Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Mon Oct-09-06 09:38 PM
Response to Reply #24
38. I remember that. The GOPs always resort to lies.
But back then the media wasn't actively complict in serving up those lies.
Printer Friendly | Permalink |  | Top
 
Sensitivity Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Mon Oct-09-06 11:46 AM
Response to Original message
29. Hey JK I was expecting the F word! Its about time.
Printer Friendly | Permalink |  | Top
 
blm Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Mon Oct-09-06 04:48 PM
Response to Reply #29
35. heh.....he got nailed using the f word in Rolling Stone....oh well....
I'd get nailed for using it everyday. heheh
Printer Friendly | Permalink |  | Top
 
zulchzulu Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Mon Oct-09-06 01:44 PM
Response to Original message
31. JK does a nice smackdown on the Lil' Yellowbellied Puggie
Good job, JK!
Printer Friendly | Permalink |  | Top
 
Supersedeas Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Mon Oct-09-06 03:37 PM
Response to Original message
32. In your filthy Pubie face slimy Mike
Printer Friendly | Permalink |  | Top
 
kwolf68 Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Mon Oct-09-06 04:17 PM
Response to Original message
34. Hardhitting...

What we need. Keep it going Senator.
Printer Friendly | Permalink |  | Top
 
kerrygoddess Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Mon Oct-09-06 09:18 PM
Response to Original message
37. John Kerry Vows Tougher Stance on Swift Boat Liars
Printer Friendly | Permalink |  | Top
 
DU AdBot (1000+ posts) Click to send private message to this author Click to view 
this author's profile Click to add 
this author to your buddy list Click to add 
this author to your Ignore list Sat Nov 22nd 2014, 04:39 PM
Response to Original message
Advertisements [?]
 Top

Home » Discuss » Archives » General Discussion: Presidential (Through Nov 2009) Donate to DU

Powered by DCForum+ Version 1.1 Copyright 1997-2002 DCScripts.com
Software has been extensively modified by the DU administrators


Important Notices: By participating on this discussion board, visitors agree to abide by the rules outlined on our Rules page. Messages posted on the Democratic Underground Discussion Forums are the opinions of the individuals who post them, and do not necessarily represent the opinions of Democratic Underground, LLC.

Home  |  Discussion Forums  |  Journals |  Store  |  Donate

About DU  |  Contact Us  |  Privacy Policy

Got a message for Democratic Underground? Click here to send us a message.

© 2001 - 2011 Democratic Underground, LLC