ABC's Jake Tapper Hits Dems for Playing the 'Fear Card,' CBS, NBC Silent on Alan Grayson's Military Smear
Only Good Morning America's Jake Tapper on Monday highlighted an attack from the liberal Alan Grayson that his Republican opponent "doesn't love this country." CBS's Early Show and NBC's Today have yet to report on the harsh new commercial by the Democratic Congressman.
Additionally, none of the networks have discussed an ad where Grayson compares the same Republican to the Taliban.
Focusing on the upcoming midterm elections, Tapper explained, "And many Democrats are playing the only card they feel they have left, the fear card." He added that Grayson himself is not a veteran, but "that isn't stopping him from using an anonymous narrator to assail his Republican opponent for not serving either."
The ad, which Tapper noted has been debunked by FactCheck.org, features this voice over: "It breaks an old soldier's heart to think Daniel Webster could ever be elected to Congress. He doesn't love this country the way I do."
None of the networks, so far, have reported on a separate commercial in which Grayson smears his GOP opponent as "Taliban Dan Webster." (Although CBSNews.com has an article on its website.) The spot began airing over the weekend, so it will be interesting to see if it elicits much outrage from the same journalists who decried a 2002 ad by Republican Saxby Chambliss.
A transcript of the September 27 segment, which aired at 7:02am EDT, follows:
GEORGE STEPHANOPOULOS: But first, Democrats went on the offensive pulling out all the stops and I'm getting personal on their opponents to keep control of congress this November. We have team coverage beginning with Jake Tapper in Washington. Jake?
JAKE TAPPER: Good morning, George. Well, that's right. With only five weeks and counting to go until the midterm elections, the big guns will playing defense in blue states and Democrats are on the attack very early and often in personal ways. Democrat Barney Frank has been in Congress for 30 years and for the last two decades he's won re-election with huge margins, sometimes running unopposed. But in this angry and tempestuous political environment Frank is taking no chances and over the weekend he unleashed the big dog to join him on the stump.
BILL CLINTON: People have a right to be angry. They have a right to be disappointed. But they still have to be make a choice. An election is not a referendum on their anger. It's a choice between two candidates.
TAPPER: President Obama is also playing defense traveling to four states he won two years ago where Democrats are struggling today. In Wisconsin, endangered Senator Russ Feingold will not appear with President Obama, preferring the company of the First Lady instead. A recent Pew poll shows independent voters favoring the Republican candidate over the Democrat by 13 points. And many Democrats are playing the only card they feel they have left, the fear card.
DEMOCRATIC AD #1: Risking social security on Wall Street.
TAPPER: Depicting their opponents as personally unacceptable.
AD #2: Renacci tried to avoid paying his taxes attempting to shelter millions. Forced to pay over a million in back taxes.
AD #3: Sued by customers for fraud leapt and deceptive practices. Two Fs from the Better Business Bureau.
TAPPER: Florida Democratic Congressman Alan Grayson did not serve in the military but that isn't stopping him from using an anonymous narrator to assail his Republican opponent for not serving either.
GRAYSON AD: It breaks an old soldier's heart to think Daniel Webster could ever be elected to Congress. He doesn't love this country the way I do.
TAPPER: That's an ad FactCheck.org calls false.
AMY WALTERS (ABC News political director): This is what you do when you're running behind in the polls. You have to make the race about the other guy because you know that if it's just simply about you, you don't have a very good chance.
TAPPER: And the First Lady Michelle Obama will be hitting the campaign trail soon. President Obama calls her the closer. Her message, George, will be positive. George?