As the GOP convention wrapped up, the Obama-Biden reelection team sent out a fundraising e-mail Thursday with an appeal from 2004 Democratic nominee John Kerry, claiming that conservatives and Republicans may spend more than 40 times as much money on "smear ads" in 2012 as they did on the "swift boat" ads that challenged Kerry's incessant military heroism narrative and Vietnam soldier-smearing in 2004:
I have one message burned into my memory for everyone who cares about the outcome of this year's presidential election:
Respond quickly and powerfully to attacks from the other side.
We've got to step up and fight back before it's too late.
What makes 2012 different from when I ran for president in 2004 is that the other side doesn't have to wait for an outside group to come along with false attacks.
Consider this: Swift Boat Veterans for Truth spent about $23 million on smear ads against me in 2004.
This year, the Romney campaign and super PACs have promised to spend more than $1 billion.
Barack Obama has been a tremendous leader who has moved our country forward in more ways than we even probably now realize. He needs another four years to get the job done.
If you tune in to the convention, you'll see that Mitt Romney and his allies have no qualms about misleading voters if it means defeating President Obama.
But their attacks won't work if enough people step up to protect the President's record.
Don't let them get away with it.
The campaign faces a critical fundraising deadline tomorrow night.
Please make a donation of $5 or more today...
(The emphasis is mine.)