Obama Wants South Carolina TV Stations To Take Down Misleading Ads Of Him Attacking Biden
The ads are sponsored by a Republican super PAC.
February 27, 2020 at 6:32 pm
It is expected that Obama will be sending a cease-and-desist letter to stop the rotation of the political advertisement. The Biden hit ad uses quotes from Obama's 1995 memoir Dreams from My Father, which suggests Biden engaged in "plantation politics," designed to abuse Black people.
The ad is linked to a Republican super PAC, the Committee to Defend the President, and their main objective is to dwarf Biden's efforts of becoming the Democratic nominee.
Last Wednesday, Patchen Haggerty, an attorney representing Obama, sent a letter to the group’s executive director, Chad Banghart, saying the ad misusing Obama’s “name, image, likeness, voice and book passage is clearly intended to mislead the target audience of the ad into believing that the passage from the audiobook is a statement that was made by President Obama during his presidency,” The Washington Post reported.
This is not the first time the Committee to Defend the President launched an ad campaign aimed at Biden. While the Nevada caucus was taking place, the super PAC targeted Hispanics and their concerns about immigration away from Biden, Politico reported.
As Saturday's South Carolina primary draws near, super PAC ads, which began airing on Tuesday, cost the committee a minimum of $250,000, Politico reported.
"This despicable ad is straight out of the Republican disinformation playbook, and it's clearly designed to suppress turnout among minority voters in South Carolina by taking President Obama's voice out of context and twisting his words to mislead viewers," Katie Hill, the former president's communications director, said in a statement. "In the interest of truth in advertising, we are calling on TV stations to take this ad down and stop playing into the hands of bad actors who seek to sow division and confusion among the electorate."
Through the law firm of Perkins Coie, Hill is drafting a letter demanding stations take down the ad.
This supposed misleading ad from a Republican-backed organization serves as a reminder that President Donald Trump, perhaps, does not want to face Biden in the general election.
Previous attempts by the Trump administration to silence or embarrass Biden's campaign resulted in a scandal that almost led to his impeachment if it were not for the Republican-led Senate that acquitted Trump of pressuring the Ukrainian government into investigating Biden and his son, as Blavity previously reported.
Ted Harvey, chairman of the super PAC, doubled down on the ad's creditability, saying both presidents, at one point, made the same argument: that Democrats give insincere verbal promises to the Black community and that Obama's 1995 quote would apply Biden now.
“It took President Trump to lower black unemployment and create jobs for the African-American community, in addition to passing criminal justice reform, Harvey said in a statement according to The Post. "Joe Biden, on the other hand, is simply giving lip-service for votes. That’s the point President Obama made in his book, and we have every right to use his own words — in his own voice — in the political forum.”
This negative advertising campaign might not even be useful since South Carolina's Rep. Jim Clyburn, the most influential Black congressman currently in office, recently endorsed Biden's presidential run.