28 August, 2008

Obama Campaign Continues to Trample the First Amendment

As I mentioned here a couple of days ago, Senator Barack Obama (D-IL) has lost all respect for the First Amendment.

Senator Barack Obama (D-IL) has asked the Department of Justice to step in and stop the airing of an ad from American Issues Project that ties him to terrorist Bill Ayers. He has also threatened station managers against airing the ad.

Apparently, this is not the first time for the Obama campaign to do this. According to Ben Smith at Politico:

It's worth noting that this isn't the first time Bauer has called for criminal investigations and prosecutions into the donors to independent groups critical of Obama, including one supporting John Edwards and another supporting Hillary Rodham Clinton. His words did have the effect of scaring their donors and consultants, but haven't yet appeared to result in any prosecution.

But, the Obama campaign was just getting started.  According to the Chicago Tribune the campaign sent out this message to its supporters:

In the next few hours, we have a crucial opportunity to fight one of the most cynical and offensive smears ever launched against Barack.
Tonight, WGN radio is giving right-wing hatchet man Stanley Kurtz a forum to air his baseless, fear-mongering terrorist smears. He's currently scheduled to spend a solid two-hour block from 9:00 to 11:00 p.m. pushing lies, distortions, and manipulations about Barack and University of Illinois professor William Ayers.

Tell WGN that by providing Kurtz with airtime, they are legitimizing baseless attacks from a smear-merchant and lowering the standards of political discourse.

Call into the "Extension 720" show with Milt Rosenberg at (312) 591-7200

(Show airs from 9:00 p.m. to 11:00 p.m. tonight)

Then report back on your call at http://my.barackobama.com/WGNstandards

Kurtz has been using his absurd TV appearances in an awkward and dishonest attempt to play the terrorism card. His current ploy is to embellish the relationship between Barack and Ayers.

Just last night on Fox News, Kurtz drastically exaggerated Barack's connection with Ayers by claiming Ayers had recruited Barack to the board of the Annenberg Challenge. That is completely false and has been disproved in numerous press accounts.

It is absolutely unacceptable that WGN would give a slimy character assassin like Kurtz time for his divisive, destructive ranting on our public airwaves. At the very least, they should offer sane, honest rebuttal to every one of Kurtz's lies.

Kurtz is scheduled to appear from 9:00 p.m. to 11:00 p.m. in the Chicago market.

Calling will only take a minute, and it will make a huge difference if we nip this smear in the bud. Confront Kurtz tonight before this goes any further:


Please forward this email to everyone you know who can make a call tonight.

Keep fighting the good fight,
Obama Action Wire


This is utterly despicable. The Obama campaign's response to criticism is to shut it down? Is this the kind of heavy-handed treatment we can expect from an Obama Presidency?

Powerline asks:

if Obama is elected President, will he appoint an Attorney General who will carry out politically-motivated prosecutions like the one he is now demanding? I suppose we can't know for sure, but why wouldn't he? If he demands criminal prosecution of free speech that opposes his political interests when he's a candidate, why wouldn't he order it as President?

I said in my previous post that this seemed worse than McCain-Feingold. It grows more and more apparent that there's no comparison at all. This has gone beyond the point of being political and is now, quite frankly, frightening.

I'm keeping his First Amendment grade at D-, for now. But that's subject to change, without notice. Further disregard of the First Amendment will make me wish I had a grade lower than F.

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