Independent PAC hits GOP’s ‘Crisis of Faith’

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The RNC’s plan to improve relations with minority voters seems to be imploding, thanks to the escalating rhetoric from the current Republican presidential frontrunners.

Priorities USA, an independent expenditure PAC that favors Hillary Clinton, is now pushing the story line that this type of anti-immigrant rhetoric isn’t unique to the 2016 election cycle – we’ve seen it before.

Liberals Say the Divisive Rhetoric Is Tied to The Past

The new Priorities ad recalls a scene from a recent Donald Trump rally that generated controversy when Trump didn’t correct a questioner who insisted that President Obama was a Muslim and that the U.S. was infested with “Muslim training camps.”

We also see Dr. Ben Carson, who is polling right behind Donald Trump, backing up similar sentiment just a day later when he told Fox’s Chuck Todd he would “absolutely not” support a Muslim president.

The ad points out that it wasn’t so long ago that many in this country had similar fears of having a Catholic president.

Played in between the scenes of Trump’s campaign and Carson‘s interview, we see John F. Kennedy – the first Catholic President – at a press conference from 1960when he publicly declared that his Catholic faith would not guide his presidency, and that a person’s religion should not be a factor in any their government service.

Kennedy, a Democrat, then notes that while Catholics in America were the ones being targeted at that time, “the finger” has been pointed in many directions throughout history – the Jewish community, Quakers, Unitarians, Baptists, and more, have all served their time as the “other.”

An Even Bigger Catholic In Washington

This spot is released not only during the controversy among the GOP presidential candidates, but at the same time Pope Francis is making a historical visit to the United States.

To the bane of many conservatives, Pope Francis praised President Obama’s policies on tackling climate change and echoes Democrats on the campaign trail with his quiet, but forceful critique of income inequality.

Conservatives argue that, in the name of religious liberty, the pope should not cross so far over into politics.

Barack Obama is the eleventh consecutive U.S. president to meet with the pope – part of a tradition that dates back nearly a century. The pope addressed Congress today, and will move on to New York and Philadelphia during his 6-day visit.

 This article originally appeared at I Agree to See.

Liberal Group Says Safety Not Guaranteed Under a Bush

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For a candidate once so eager to separate himself from his family name, Jeb Bush is quick to defend his family’s legacy – especially his brother’s time as president.

At the last GOP debate, Jeb earned what was arguably his most raucous applause of the whole night, and briefly flustered Donald Trump when he said, “as it relates to my brother, there’s one thing I know for sure; he kept us safe.”

Not everyone agrees though, including Americans United for Change, the liberal action group behind this ad.

Remembering the Turbulent Tenure of George W. Bush

The ad cycles through the tumultuous events that took place under Bush II – starting with shifting the blame of a “crumbling economy” back onto the Bush administration. The ad then asks if viewers feel “Safe from a bureaucratic catastrophe” while showing clips from the devastation of Hurricane Katrina.

Of course, no ad criticizing the presidency of George W. Bush could be void of clips from the multi-pronged war on terror, and this ad is no different. We see a clip of soldiers in Iraq being jolted by a blast as we hear a news anchor say “the number no one wanted to reach in Iraq; 4,000 Americans dead.”

The ad finishes up alluding to 9/11 and asks if the viewer felt “Safe from terrorism?” Showing some restraint, the ad shows a picture of the World Trade Center memorial, with its lights shining into the sky – rather than clips of the travesty itself.

Who’s Issuing the Attack From Decades Past?

Americans United for Change is a liberal group, but doesn’t have to disclose its donors since it’s listed as a 501(c)(4).

The group is keen on attacking Bush II and his administration. It was born from the ashes of Americans United to Protect Social Security – a labor funded political group formed in 2005 to oppose George W. Bush’s Social Security Proposal. Most of their efforts now though, focus on foreign policy.

And with the Middle East still in the forefront of American politics, we can be certain that foreign policy attack ads will continue to fly from both sides.

With Jeb Bush’s poll numbers continuing to drop, he might welcome the attention from these liberal opponents. At least it makes him seem still relevant.

This article originally appeared at I Agree to See.

Carly Fiorina’s New Ad – Is it a New Low? [Warning: Graphic Content]

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Just when you thought 2016 political ads couldn’t get any more outrageous, Carly Fiorina’s Super PAC released this ad.

At the most recent GOP debate, Fiorina was applauded when she dared “Hillary Clinton, Barack Obama to watch these tapes. Watch a fully formed fetus on the table, its heart beating, its legs kicking, while someone says, ‘We have to keep it alive to harvest its brain.”

Critics were quick to point out that Fiorina was citing a charge from a former Planned Parenthood employee, Holly O’Donnell. While O’Donnell did describe the scene Fiorina was referring to, there was no video of the allegation in any of the sting videos that spurred the most recent uproar over Planned Parenthood funding.

Facing charges of being caught in a lie, Carly Fiorina doubled down on her claims, and released a political ad that actually features the horrifying scene she described in the debate, albeit from another video source.

Is this the most graphic political ad in history?

The ad opens up with the profession “Carly Fiorina won the debate. So here come the false attacks.” Then the ad taunts major news headlines, “No Video,” from the Washington Post, “Nonexistent,” from MSNBC, “Bogus,” according to Talking Points Memo.

The ad cuts to CNN’s presidential debate, where we see Fiorina’s initial charges on the aforementioned videos. But then the video takes a turn down a dark, grisly path – one certainly not for the faint of heart.

We see clips of exactly what Carly Fiorina described in the debate: “a fully formed fetus, its heart beating, its legs kicking.” The clips are attributed to the Grantham Collection & Center for Bio-Ethical Reform.

The verdict is still out on whether or not a political ad this shocking will help or hurt Carly Fiorina.

This article originally appeared at I Agree to See.

GOP Candidates Fight for the Title of ‘Most Pro-Life’

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Presidential debates have proven to be fodder for ad makers on both sides of the aisle. The same candidate statement used in a positive ad to the Republican base can just as easily be used in an attack ad to loyal Democrats.

That was particularly true with CNN’s recent GOP presidential debate. With the fight to defund Planned Parenthood reaching a deadline in Congress, the issue was front and center throughout the broadcast.

And since the issue is drawn heavily on partisan lines, the progressive-leaning PAC, American Bridge, took the GOP debate as an opportunity to use the Republican rhetoric attacking Planned Parenthood against them.

The Battle of Who Defunded Planned Parenthood First

The ad opens up with Jeb Bush touting his record as the self-proclaimed “most pro-life governor on this stage,” who already “defunded Planned Parenthood.” Then we hear Scott Walker jump in; “I defunded Planned Parenthood four and half years ago – in a blue state.” Chris Christie cuts in right after, boasting that he defunded Planned Parenthood “six years ago – as the brand new, first ever, pro-life governor of New Jersey.”

The ad scrolls through similar statements from the rest of the panel and ends up with a focus on Ted Cruz who calls Planned Parenthood an “ongoing criminal enterprise.”

The conservative stance on defunding Planned Parenthood is pretty clear-cut on the campaign trail. With only 31 House conservatives demanding that funds for Planned Parenthood stay out of any funding bill; however, this week is going to be an uphill battle for Republicans who want to make the pro-life campaign rhetoric a reality.

This article originally appeared at I Agree to See.

Is This The Political Ad That Didn’t Save Scott Walker’s Campaign?

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Just a few days ago Scott Walker’s advertisements were blaring he would never “back down.”

What a difference a few days makes in this free for all of a presidential contest.

After falling to the back of the pack in the most recent polls Scott Walker hasreportedly decided to suspend his campaign – making him the 2nd GOP candidate to step out of the race.

Deemed as the “Koch Brothers’ Golden Boy” by many pundits, Walker had an initialy promising candidacy – buoyed by strong fundraising and poll numbers… at least at first.

According to RealClearPolitics, he was one of the top contenders, but starting July 30th, 2015, his numbers went into a free fall and according to a supporter who was briefed on the decision, his bank account started to also run dry. The supporter said, “he’s made a decision not to limp into Iowa.”

The first polls after last week’s CNN GOP presidential debate reported Walker polling at less than 1%… not a good sign for a candidate who released a political ad four days earlier saying that he “won’t back down.” Pretty ironic…

Scott Walker has yet to officially announce that he is stepping out of the race, but a press conference is set for today, Monday, September 21 at 6 p.m. EST.

Two down, 15 to go.

This article originally appeared at I Agree to See.

Oh, For the Love of Reagan…

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It is no secret that Republicans love Ronald Reagan. Virtually all of the 2016 presidential candidates have already offered up some sort of tribute to the conservative demi-god and that praise will likely continue tonight when they all square up for tonight’s CNN’s debate… at the Ronald Reagan Presidential Library.

Even unapologetic billionaire real estate mogul, Donald Trump, has paid his respects to the patron saint of Republicanism, with his slogan “Make America Great Again.”

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But in the eyes of the National Immigration Forum Action Fund, “making America great again,” seems to mean something different for the GOP in 2016 than it did to Reagan.

The GOP Haunted by the Ghost of 80s Past

Timed just before this week’s Republican presidential debate, this pro-immigration reform group released a television ad that juxtaposes Ronald Reagan’s welcoming stance on immigration with the rhetoric of the current GOP field. Needless to say it’s a dramatic shift.

Mixed with panoramic shots of U.S. cities and a montage of multi-ethnic faces, we hear a portion of Reagan’s farewell address where he famously describes “a shining city… teeming with people of all kinds, living in harmony and peace.”

The ad jumps ahead 26 years later with Donald Trump claiming illegal immigrants are “bringing crime… they’re rapists,” and then to Scott Walker and Ted Cruz calling for an end to birthright citizenship.

“Ronald Reagan had a different vision for America,” the ad reads, before returning to Reagan’s speech and a montage of an America full of working families, sprawling farms and breathtaking landscapes.

Indeed he did – his 1986 immigration reform bill legalized 3 million undocumented immigrants. Also, Reagan once famously quipped, “Latinos are Republicans, they just don’t know it yet” – a hopeful wish GOP candidates like Jeb Bush and Marco Rubio are struggling to hold on to today.

“In my mind it was a tall proud city… open to anyone with the will and heart to get here,” we hear Reagan say. “That’s how I saw it, and see it still.”

The ReTrumplican Backlash

Many argue that if Reagan was alive today, he would no doubt be troubled by the campaign rhetoric coming from his fellow Republicans whose views are, by nearly any measure, far to the right of Ronald Reagan’s.

This six-figure ad buy includes time on CNN, MSNBC and Fox during their pre- and post-debate coverage, according to the Washington Post. But The National Immigration Forum Action Fund is not the only pro-immigration group looking to buy up ad time during CNN’s debate.

According to the New York Times, The Latino Victory Project, co-founded by DNC finance chairman Henry Muñoz and actress Eva Longoria are looking to air an ad criticizing the Republican presidential field as well. This is echoed by a growing number of business leaders calling for others to denounce the GOP field for what AOL’s Steve Case recently called a “rising tide of anti-immigrant activism.”

We will find out tonight who will heed the warning, and who will shout over it.

This article originally appeared at I Agree to See.

Monday Night Marco

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The 2015 NFL season kicked off its first game last week – and Marco Rubio saw an opportunity to take the ball and run with it.

Mixing politics and professional sports, Marco Rubio, a former high school football star himself, released the ad “Catching Footballs and Fielding Questions.” See, former high school jocks don’t always end up living in their mom’s basement.

Marco Rubio Tackles the “Hard-Hitting” Questions

Set up 21 Questions style, the ad is simple: Marco Rubio standing against white background, playing with footballs, answering some football related questions, leaving just enough room for some dad joke-level political puns.

We hear the NFL theme song in the background as Rubio spouts off some of his football favorites, like his favorite team, the Miami Dolphins (and of course his favorite Miami Dolphins cheerleader – the one he married).

He leaves a little room to crack some jokes on his opponents too, like comparing Tom Brady’s texts to Hillary Clinton’s emails.

He talks a little bit about his time as a youth football coach – saying that the advice he gives his team is to “have fun – if you do the best you can things are going to turn out the way they’re going to turn out.”

Maybe he also should also tell them that the saying “get your head in the game” isn’t literal.

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He ends with a soft joke on himself, “make sure there’s water around” – probably referring to the jokes around his egregious consumption of water that became an over night Internet meme.

But Marco Rubio is in Need for a Big Play

Unfortunately for Marco Rubio, his poll numbers have remained stagnant and he might need to throw a Hail Mary in order to stay in the game. In a recent CBS News/NYT 2016 Republican Presidential Nomination poll, Rubio polled at 6%, tying with Jeb Bush and Mike Huckabee.

Even his home team advantage isn’t helping him out in the Florida polls, wherePublic Policy Polling shows him behind Trump, Carson, and Bush.

This article originally appeared at I Agree to See.