Mccain’s Newest Ad: Reprising a (Debunked) Lie

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John McCain doesn’t seem to care about how he finishes the race—with integrity or without. In recent days, he keeps claiming that Barack Obama is an untrustworthy pol who will say anything to get elected. But let’s look at the newest McCain ad, Here’s the narration:

Iran. Radical Islamic government. Known sponsors of terrorism. Developing nuclear capabilities to generate power, but threatening to eliminate Israel. Obama says Iran is a “tiny” country, “doesn’t pose a serious threat.” Terrorism, destroying Israel, those aren’t “serious threats?” Obama—dangerously unprepared to be President.

This is about as dishonest an ad as the McCain campaign has produced. In fact, it’s a repeat of an ad the campaign tried in August. When that earlier ad was released, Factcheck.org explained why it was fraudulent. Obama, it noted, had in May said this:

Strong countries and strong presidents talk to their adversaries. That’s what Kennedy did with Khrushchev. That’s what Reagan did with Gorbachev. That’s what Nixon did with Mao. I mean think about it. Iran, Cuba, Venezuela—these countries are tiny compared to the Soviet Union. They don’t pose a serious threat to us the way the Soviet Union posed a threat to us.

Obama’s reference to Iran as “tiny” was entirely in the context of comparing it—and any threat it poses—to the old Evil Empire. Given that the Soviet Union had thousands of nuclear warheads aimed at the United States and Iran now has none, it is beyond debate that the Soviet threat was more harrowing and immediate than the Iranian threat of today. Obama obviously did not say that Iran presented no threat at all.

This ad is—let’s be frank—a lie. It’s certainly not the only deliberate misrepresentation hurled by the McCain camp. But the revival of this phony attack shows that the candidate whose supporters hold up placards declaring “Honor” cares little about real honor as the race draws to a close.

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This is no time to come up short. It's time to fight like hell, as our namesake would tell us to do, for a democracy where minority rule cannot impose an extreme agenda, where facts matter, and where accountability has a chance at the polls and in the press. If you value our reporting and you can right now, please help us dig out of the $100,000 hole we're starting our new budgeting cycle in with an always-needed and always-appreciated donation today.

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