McCain ad: “ACORN”

posted at 3:00 pm on October 10, 2008 by Ed Morrissey

Team McCain has decided to open another line of attack, this time in a new web ad titled “ACORN”. At 90 seconds, it won’t get any TV air time, at least not in its present form, but could signal a new attack strategy to tie Barack Obama even more closely to the present financial collapse:

ANNCR: Who is Barack Obama? A man with “a political baptism performed at warp speed.” Vast ambition.

After college, he moved to Chicago. Became a community organizer. There, Obama met Madeleine Talbot, part of the Chicago branch of ACORN. He was so impressive that he was asked to train the ACORN staff.

What did ACORN in Chicago engage in? Bullying banks. Intimidation tactics. Disruption of business. ACORN forced banks to issue risky home loans. The same types of loans that caused the financial crisis we’re in today.

No wonder Obama’s campaign is trying to distance him from the group, saying, “Barack Obama Never Organized with ACORN.” But Obama’s ties to ACORN run long and deep. He taught classes for ACORN. They even endorsed him for President.

But now ACORN is in trouble.

REPORTER: There are at least 11 investigations across the country involving thousands of potentially fraudulent ACORN forms.

ANNCR: Massive voter fraud. And the Obama campaign paid more than $800,000 to an ACORN front for get out the vote efforts.

Pressuring banks to issue risky loans. Nationwide voter fraud.

Barack Obama. Bad judgment. Blind ambition. Too risky for America.

This makes a good ad for the web, but Team McCain had better start figuring out how to get this into 30-second slices. They need to get this story out to American voters quickly if they expect to see a pushback on Obama’s momentum.


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The ad really is missing the “acorn doesn’t fall far from the tree” line though.

lorien1973 on October 10, 2008 at 4:08 PM

jon1979 on October 10, 2008 at 3:29 PM
Marybeth on October 10, 2008 at 3:57 PM

Was just reported on FNC during Carl Cameron’s last stand-up that the TV versions of this ad are ready to go.

McCain’s already been mentioning ACORN, and was very clear in his outrage yesterday.

And now Obama has directly challenged his manhood about bring up Ayers “to [his] face.”

ACORN and Ayers will come up in the debate – from McCain if necessary, but I think much more likely from the moderator. In fact, I expect an approach from the moderator similar to the ones from near the last Democratic debates when some of the most explosive charges against Barack were finally “mainstreamed.”

McCain will be practicing his lines all weekend, and trying out a few of them in his stump speeches. He wants it all to be tied as much to the economy and leadership issues as possible. Otherwise, when he thinks he has a line that pays off, he gets pretty gleeful about using it. I would predict that there will be something he says that pisses BO off, and that McCain repeats over and over and over again up to the moment the polls close.

CK MacLeod on October 10, 2008 at 4:11 PM

I keep thinking that McCain will find an opening…there are many–and run through it…but he doesn’t…

Its sort of like watching the Ali-Holmes fight…you keep thinking Ali will find the old magic and take it to Holmes, but it was never there to begin with and the younger guy just whipped ass…

joepub on October 10, 2008 at 4:13 PM

The ad really is missing the “acorn doesn’t fall far from the tree” line though.

lorien1973 on October 10, 2008 at 4:08 PM

Love that line. Good show. Now, were you born in 73? Asked yesterday…I won’t tell anyone.

HornetSting on October 10, 2008 at 4:14 PM

I live in PA,, I am hearing endless Obama ads on radio,, not a single one of McCain. Seldom watch TV, so can’t comment there. I am, however,, seeing McCain signs throughout the 6 or more counties I travel through. About 15 McCain signs to 1 Obama.

JellyToast on October 10, 2008 at 4:16 PM

TV aids arent the way to win. The GOP is still to disorganised to beat the Dems as things currently stand.

The Idea is to get the ACORN story out. That is now happening. Now if McCain can get the dems tied to fannie mae and freddie mac he can do some serious damage.

William Amos on October 10, 2008 at 4:18 PM

I like the content of this ad, but McCain needs to appeal to the undecideds on a personal level. Acorn and the democrats are responsible for hurting your house’s value, Acorn is responsible for hurting the value of your 401k, Acorn made your bank issue bad loans, and Acorn is corrupting your elections.

mtbunji on October 10, 2008 at 4:19 PM

HornetSting on October 10, 2008 at 4:14 PM

Nah. i put 1973 in there cuz I loved Nixon so much.

Come on. Of course I was born then. LOL

lorien1973 on October 10, 2008 at 4:22 PM

JellyToast: That’s what I’m hearing and seeing in PA, too. Somethin’ screwy ’bout the polls….

gracie on October 10, 2008 at 4:22 PM

What comes out of the debate depends on the questions.

Since the MSM Osama Obama goon squad gets to make ‘em up, I’m expecting : “Senator Obama, do you think McCain is using old news about Bill Ayers and ACORN — which we have already proved to be trumped-up distractions — as a last-ditch desperation tactic?”

And “Senator McCain, are you finally ready to admit the truth about your complicity in the Keating Five scandal?”

MrScribbler on October 10, 2008 at 4:22 PM

A is for ARGH, my 401K.
C is for corrupt.
O is for Obama is our man.
R is for RICO charge.
N is for No account, good for Nothing, waste of air criminals have No right to steal this damn election for their Messiah!

J is for Jail. Let’s get it done! NOW!

HornetSting on October 10, 2008 at 4:24 PM

Nah. i put 1973 in there cuz I loved Nixon so much.

Come on. Of course I was born then. LOL

lorien1973 on October 10, 2008 at 4:22 PM

Alright, smarty pants. Me too, but I believe your B-day is on the great Messiah Mass on the 29th, right? I am older.
I kind of like being born in the year of Nixon. Street cred.

HornetSting on October 10, 2008 at 4:25 PM

but I believe your B-day is on the great Messiah Mass on the 29th, right? I am older.

At this age, I wouldn’t be too happy about that. I’ve hated every birthday after 25. Depressing.

I kind of like being born in the year of Nixon. Street cred.

Nixon wouldn’t have been afraid to go after ACORN or Dodd or Frank. Win at all costs. He’s the template for winning elections these days.

lorien1973 on October 10, 2008 at 4:30 PM

When Obama made the say it to my face comment, he gave McCain the opening to bring up what ever he wants at the next debate.

mtbunji on October 10, 2008 at 4:33 PM

Someone mentioned Obama buying media time, let’s see the invoice. There is a funny history of msm keeping 2 sets of books. Republican media buys get to pay one price while the Democrats get a “friends and family” discount price.

moxie_neanderthal on October 10, 2008 at 4:34 PM

Nixon wouldn’t have been afraid to go after ACORN or Dodd or Frank. Win at all costs. He’s the template for winning elections these days.

lorien1973 on October 10, 2008 at 4:30 PM

Damn skippy.

HornetSting on October 10, 2008 at 4:35 PM

moxie_neanderthal on October 10, 2008 at 4:34 PM

A 30 second spot during the superbowl costs about $3 million.

A 30 minute spot is costing Obama $961,000 during primetime?

lorien1973 on October 10, 2008 at 4:37 PM

If that were the going rate, and I were a candidate, I’d buy up 2 spots per week. 30 minutes each. And forego any other method of advertising.

lorien1973 on October 10, 2008 at 4:38 PM

Good ad. Just add another one that flashes through Rezko, Khalikis, Pleger, Wright, Ayers, Farrakhan, Fannie, Freddie, ACORN, the New Party and the Democratic Socialists of America. It is the sum of all these parts that provides the true picture of the man.

Star20 on October 10, 2008 at 4:40 PM

A 30 second spot during the superbowl costs about $3 million.

A 30 minute spot is costing Obama $961,000 during primetime?

lorien1973 on October 10, 2008 at 4:37 PM

Good point. Middle East money must buy more pull.

HornetSting on October 10, 2008 at 4:40 PM

lorien1973 on October 10, 2008 at 4:38 PM

Not so sure about that, I can’t even imagine how low the viewership of that would be.

30 minutes of BLAH BLAH BLAH BLAH BLAH BLAH BLAH BLAH BLAH BLAH BLAH BLAH.

I think he just blew 961K.

Marine_Bio on October 10, 2008 at 4:42 PM

A 30 second spot during the superbowl costs about $3 million.

A 30 minute spot is costing Obama $961,000 during primetime?

lorien1973 on October 10, 2008 at 4:37 PM

Exactly. I just read the article. I have to figure they are missing a 0 otherwise there is no excuse that the McCain camp has not or is not putting together a 30 minute presentation on why people should vote for McCain.

patrick neid on October 10, 2008 at 4:46 PM

We live in a really twisted world. Much of the same american public that will watch an episode where wives are swapped between housholds and the ensuing chaos is generally unwilling to give more than 20 seconds to forming an opinion.

I hope the 30 minute commericial is a complete bust for Obama.

Marine_Bio on October 10, 2008 at 4:46 PM

It is the sum of all these parts that provides the true picture of the man.

Star20 on October 10, 2008 at 4:40 PM

That’s part of what the “contact sheet” layout and stylization of this whole series of “Who Is Barack Obama?” ads are supposed to imply. The viewer is supposed to connect this ad with the others. The underlying implication is that there are tons of snapshots that “we” are putting together – kind of like investigative journalists or detectives in a mystery thriller.

There will be one or more “climactic” ads that put the whole picture – all of the pictures – together.

CK MacLeod on October 10, 2008 at 4:47 PM

Marine_Bio on October 10, 2008 at 4:42 PM

Possibly. Perot got good numbers in 1992 by doing that, though.

I wouldn’t run it like a weekly sitcom for a whole year or anything. But for 6-8 weeks or so, you get out everything you need to say, unfiltered to anyone who wants to watch.

6 days between shows.

1 Watch my economic recovery plan on wednesday
2 A taste of what I’m offering
3 Tomorrow, I’m unveiling it
4 TV spot
5 Yesterday, I talked about my plan
6 The other day I talked about my plan
7 This week I talked about this, next week I’m talking about this

It forces the media to go back and run clips of the program and gets the message out there for anyone to see.

I don’t think it’s a bad move, really.

I can’t stand Obama, but I’m curious how it pans out.

lorien1973 on October 10, 2008 at 4:47 PM

If the prices are accurate for 30 minutes of TV time at 1 million even 10 million McCain had better have an impressive investigative format laying the case against Obama tying together all the unseemly characters that make up his life to date–including his complete lack of transparency concerning his college and state senate careers.

The last 10 minutes can be a positive statement of why folks should vote for McCain in these difficult times ending the show on a very upbeat note.

patrick neid on October 10, 2008 at 4:52 PM

Good to see that the McCain campaign has moved onto another of Obama’s dodgy associations after spending a week hitting him on Ayers. After a week or so on ACORN they will probably shift the focus to Rezko or one of Obama’s other scumbag friends thus constantly keeping Obama on the defensive for the remainder of the campaign.

The good thing about that add as well was the link that it made between Obama, Acorn and the financial crisis. Powerful stuff that will really get voter attention when they hear it. Although I felt they should have said something about how Obama represented ACORN in some court cases against the Banks.

Dreadnought223 on October 10, 2008 at 4:57 PM

John McCain should buy a half hour after Obama, for the 900K that Obama paid, and run these 1:30 ads. Run 20 of them.

WoosterOh on October 10, 2008 at 4:58 PM

CLEVELAND – A man at the center of a voter-registration scandal told The Post yesterday he was given cash and cigarettes by aggressive ACORN activists in exchange for registering an astonishing 72 times, in apparent violation of Ohio laws.

“Sometimes, they come up and bribe me with a cigarette, or they’ll give me a dollar to sign up,” said Freddie Johnson, 19, who filled out 72 separate voter-registration cards over an 18-month period at the behest of the left-leaning Association of Community Organizations for Reform Now.

Read the whole article… ACORN has ruined the integrity of this election!

http://www.nypost.com/seven/10102008/news/politics/1_voter__72_registrations_132965.htm

Keemo on October 10, 2008 at 5:00 PM

I think the 30-minute buy serves several purposes for Obama, even though, if I were an Obama supporter, I’d be getting creepy Berlinish feelings about it:

1) immediate purpose: intimidation – we’re so flush with cash we can buy TV itself if we want to!

2) intermediate purpose: keep ‘em guessing about what it might entail

3) underlying purpose – worst case (from O-team’s perspective): Obama worries that, even if he has a lead in the last week, he might be subject to a final conservative decision by an electorate faced with more uncertainty than it can bear, as enhanced by McCain negative campaigning and presumed residual racial-cultural discomfort. The point of the ad will likely be to re-assure. If so, it might backfire.

4) underlying purpose – best case (from O-team’s perspective): Obama worries that, even if he wins, he’ll be such damaged goods both to his opponents and even to larg numbers of his supporters that victory will hardly be worth having, especially if the economic and/or foreign situations look bleak. Again, the message will likely be to re-assure.

5) underlying purpose – middle case: Obama will simply make his closing argument. It won’t matter much one way or the other, but it’ll still represent around 0.3% or less of his total campaign expenditures – so who cares?

CK MacLeod on October 10, 2008 at 5:02 PM

CNN wont mention ACORN…is this not unbelievable??? look at their current ‘more important’ headlines
Latest News
CNNMoney: World finance leaders huddle
McCain faces conservative backlash
Democrats eye second stimulus package
Ticker: McCain-Palin accused of ‘fear tactics’
Colin Powell testifies in senator’s trial
Palin trooper inquiry set for release
Support Obama? No parking for you!
When president is hurt, who needs to know?
Campbell Brown: Things are getting desperate

malkinmania on October 10, 2008 at 5:04 PM

CK MacLeod

I think the 30-minute buy serves several purposes for Obama, even though, if I were an Obama supporter, I’d be getting creepy Berlinish feelings about it:

1) immediate purpose: intimidation – we’re so flush with cash we can buy TV itself if we want to!

2) intermediate purpose: keep ‘em guessing about what it might entail

3) underlying purpose – worst case (from O-team’s perspective): Obama worries that, even if he has a lead in the last week, he might be subject to a final conservative decision by an electorate faced with more uncertainty than it can bear, as enhanced by McCain negative campaigning and presumed residual racial-cultural discomfort. The point of the ad will likely be to re-assure. If so, it might backfire.

4) underlying purpose – best case (from O-team’s perspective): Obama worries that, even if he wins, he’ll be such damaged goods both to his opponents and even to larg numbers of his supporters that victory will hardly be worth having, especially if the economic and/or foreign situations look bleak. Again, the message will likely be to re-assure.

5) underlying purpose – middle case: Obama will simply make his closing argument. It won’t matter much one way or the other, but it’ll still represent around 0.3% or less of his total campaign expenditures – so who cares?

Maybe Obama will trot out all of his celebrity friends in a 30 min special to expalin why they think people should vote for him.

Dreadnought223 on October 10, 2008 at 5:11 PM

McCain and/or RNC could put together ONE HELL of an anti-Obama infomercial. OUCH!

marklmail on October 10, 2008 at 5:16 PM

After dissembling Obama’s career, ACORN, Fannie Mae et al it must also include a dressing down of congress both dem and repub with special emphasis on Pelosi, Reid, Dodd and Frank with very honest admissions about out of control repub spending when they were in control. And then talk about EARMARKS!!!

McCain must present, at the end, that along with Palin they mean to embark upon the America’s most important challenge–reforming DC–without that none of the other serious problems we face can ever be solved.

This is not a difficult task. And for god’s sake leave out any global warning nonsense.

patrick neid on October 10, 2008 at 5:33 PM

AT DEBATE: “Senator Obama, is this the same ACORN that you, Pelosi, Reid, Dodd, and Frank tried to sneak and give BILLIONS of dollars to in the bailout bill?”

marklmail on October 10, 2008 at 5:45 PM

AT DEBATE: “Senator Obama, is this the same ACORN that you, Pelosi, Reid, Dodd, and Frank tried to sneak and give BILLIONS of dollars to in the bailout bill?”

marklmail on October 10, 2008 at 5:45 PM

excellent……..

patrick neid on October 10, 2008 at 5:48 PM

Still waiting for Rev Wright connection. When will that shoe finally drop?

Hening on October 10, 2008 at 3:03 PM

It was reported today (WSJ?) that McCain has vetoed bringing up Wright. Why? Apparently doesn’t want to be called a ‘racist’. So Wright isn’t one?

More evidence that McCain is basically a damned fool.

MrLynn on October 10, 2008 at 6:07 PM

That video was horrible. It hurt my eyes. I love the message, just not the delivery. I think Obama is seriously over-playing his hand with all these ad buys. By the time people vote people will be sick of his grating voice. I say it will back fire and turn off the youths (his base, along with blacks).

SouthernGent on October 10, 2008 at 6:10 PM

wow ….. great ad and the truth.

I am forwarding the link to everyone I know.

You all do the same.

Let’s roll!

ex-Democrat on October 10, 2008 at 6:25 PM

Ok, I am seeing that the ad has been removed. This video is no longer available due to a copyright claim by Fox News Network, LLC

kahall on October 10, 2008 at 6:45 PM

Fox News had the ad pulled?? Arrrgh.

capitalist piglet on October 10, 2008 at 6:59 PM

ACORN and Ayers will come up in the debate – from McCain if necessary, but I think much more likely from the moderator. In fact, I expect an approach from the moderator similar to the ones from near the last Democratic debates when some of the most explosive charges against Barack were finally “mainstreamed.”

McCain will be practicing his lines all weekend, and trying out a few of them in his stump speeches. He wants it all to be tied as much to the economy and leadership issues as possible. Otherwise, when he thinks he has a line that pays off, he gets pretty gleeful about using it. I would predict that there will be something he says that pisses BO off, and that McCain repeats over and over and over again up to the moment the polls close.

I hope we get a moderator who will let them debate, as Jim Lehrer did in the first debate. He basically asked a “lead question”, and let them go at it for about five minutes.

Brokaw was HORRIBLE in the second debate. He screened out the questions so nothing controversial or embarrassing was asked–no hot-button issues, then gave each candidate two minutes, with no rebuttal. So, the first candidate to speak answered the question, and the second candidate had the advantage of knowing both the question and the first candidate’s answer, and could lie through his teeth, with no chance for counter-rebuttal.

If the moderator doesn’t ask a question about ACORN, McCain will have to bring it up, not so much in the context of voter fraud, but in the context of ACORN’s “bullying the banks” and later Fannie and Freddie into making risky loans, being part of the reason for the financial crisis. He can then bring up that Obama trained ACORN members and represented ACORN in a lawsuit against a bank. McCain can then conclude that Obama was partly responsible for the financial crisis, while McCain tried to regulate Fannie and Freddie, but was thwarted by Democrats in the Senate.

McCain could probably use some debate-prep help from someone once thought to be a liability–Sarah Palin! In her debate with Biden, Palin was very adroit at responding quickly to a question, then using her remaining time to “pivot” back to criticize Biden’s answer to a previous question. To paraphrase Teddy Roosevelt, McCain needs to speak quickly and carry a big stick.

Steve Z on October 10, 2008 at 7:20 PM

Ok, I am seeing that the ad has been removed. This video is no longer available due to a copyright claim by Fox News Network, LLC

kahall on October 10, 2008 at 6:45 PM

Ummm that just doesn’t seem right. Doesn’t follow their profile. Youtube or someone is up to something.

- the Cat

MirCat on October 10, 2008 at 7:28 PM

If it’s the 90-second ad, it’s still on You-Tube, if you search for it.

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=PkE86lXsCCc

If that’s the one we’re talking about — I absolutely love it.

Remains to be seen whether it has any impact.

ClintACK on October 10, 2008 at 9:11 PM

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=PkE86lXsCCc

BoogPowell on October 11, 2008 at 12:55 AM

“We’re sorry. This video is no longer available”

WTF? Did NBC get hold of it?

rotorhead on October 11, 2008 at 1:10 AM

vids gone

Viper1 on October 11, 2008 at 7:28 AM

Down the memory hole…

For your edification, check out this link at Jawa or maybe this link also at Jawa.

desertdweller on October 12, 2008 at 1:05 AM

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