Tuesday, October 21, 2008

Newsweek: DSCC Ad "Not True"

Newsweek -- not exactly part of the "vast, right-wing conspiracy" -- checked the facts in the Democratic Senatorial Campaign Committee's ad against Mitch McConnell and concluded that the ad is "not true."

Newsweek focused on the DSCC's "wild west" ad against the Senate Republican Leader:

Announcer:Some places it would be considered a crime, but not in Washington. Wall Street's big banks gave Mitch McConnell $4.4 million for his campaigns, and he fought for less regulation of Wall Street. McConnell opened the gate and Wall Street went wild. And now, our entire economy is at risk. Maybe it's time we bring Mitch McConnell back to the corral. The Democratic Senatorial Campaign Committee is responsible for the content of this advertising.

The DSCC "takes liberty with the facts" in trying to blame McConnell for the mess on Wall Street, according to Newsweek:

One such ad tells us that "Wall Street's big banks gave Mitch McConnell $4.4 million for his campaigns." But that's not true. According to the Center for Responsive Politics, Sen. McConnell of Kentucky has received $4.4 million in contributions from the financial, insurance and real estate sectors – a much broader group than "Wall Street's big banks."

As evidence for its claim that McConnell "fought for less regulation of Wall Street" and that he "opened the gate and Wall Street went wild," the ad cites McConnell's vote for the Gramm-Leach-Bliley Act. But that law wasn't what caused the meltdown. We examined that legislation in our previous report, ultimately noting that "economists on both sides of the political spectrum have suggested that the act has probably made the crisis less severe than it might otherwise have been."

As for the ad's assertions that in "some places" McConnell's acceptance of campaign contributions from the financial industry and his actions in the Senate "would be considered a crime": Perhaps so, but by that standard practically any House or Senate member of either party could be called a criminal just for taking donations from groups whose interests they support. In the U.S., that's perfectly legal. (Emphasis added.)

Good for Newsweek for speaking the truth in an election cycle in which the overwhelming majority of coverage consists of a series of love sonnets to the One.

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