Bush Ad Criticizes Kerry's Intel Committee Attendance Record
As the President readies his intelligence reform proposals, NBC Nightly News reports on a new ad in which the Bush-Cheney camp tries "to convince voters that imagery and war record aside, Senator Kerry is not the right man to lead the war on terrorism. Kerry and his running mate claim they'd be faster and more effective in forming intelligence. Kerry highlights his long service on the Senate Intelligence Committee. But now, that's become the target of a new Bush campaign ad airing tomorrow in key states." The Bush ad was then showed: Kerry (from Bush ad): "I will immediately reform the intelligence system." Announcer (from Bush ad): "Oh, really? As a member of the Intelligence Committee, Senator Kerry was absent from 76% of the committee's hearings. In the year after the first terrorist attack on the World Trade Center, Kerry was absent for every single one." USA Today says the Bush ad "begins airing today in about 20 closely contested states and is part of an estimated $35 million the Bush-Cheney campaign will spend on TV advertising this month."
Roberts Suggests Kerry Could Ask For Release Of His Attendance At Closed Sessions. NBC Nightly News also reported on the Kerry camp's reaction. The Senator's aides conceded "that he missed many open committee meetings but claims he attended closed sessions. Today that claim prompted a challenge from Intelligence Committee Chairman Pat Roberts." Sen. Roberts said, "All you have to do is have a senator say, 'Please release the attendance records in regards to the closed and open meetings,' and we'll be happy to do it."
Campaign Strategists Discuss Cheney Charge That Kerry "Lacks Conviction."
Bush campaign pollster Matthew Dowd and Kerry strategist Tad Devine appeared on CBS' Face the Nation yesterday, where they discussed Vice President Dick Cheney's claim that Kerry lacks a deeply held conviction about right or wrong. Dowd said, "Kerry doesn't want to talk about his 19-year record. He wants to sort of run away from it. He's a person that, over the last two or three he's voted for No Child Left Behind and now is against No Child Left Behind. He voted for the Patriot Act and now is against the Patriot Act. He voted for the Iraq war resolution, and now we're still trying to figure out exactly what he is. The last statement they had was that he was for the war. So I think the vice president is pointing out there's an indecisiveness or a shift with the political winds." Devine said Cheney "has really lost credibility in this campaign. I mean, the attacks that he's raised are not serious, and I think they are not taken seriously by voters."