A Restore Our Future ad titled “Flatline” suggests that the economy is “dead” and will stay that way as long as President Obama is in office. That’s absurd: Under Obama, the enormous monthly job losses President Bush left behind have turned into steady private-sector growth, including 4.97 million new jobs in the last 32 months.Read more after the jump.
Organizations: Restore Our Future
In the penultimate week before Election Day, conservative outside groups once again flooded the airwaves with attacks on Democratic candidates. Ten conservative groups were responsible for the 31 televisions ads we fact-checked – 16 of them targeting House candidates, 10 aimed at Senate candidates, and five attacking President Obama or cheerleading for Mitt Romney. As they did last week, Karl Rove’s American Crossroads and Crossroads GPS led the way, accounting for 12 of the ads we debunked. Since Monday, the two groups have announced four separate ad buys totaling a whopping $22.8 million.
Aside from American Crossroads and Crossroads GPS, several groups contributed to the assault on President Obama and Democratic Senate candidates. Restore Our Future, 60 Plus, and the American Future Fund each weighed in on the presidential race. We also fact-checked two Senate ads from the U.S. Chamber of Commerce and one apiece from American Commitment and Hardworking Americans Committee.
Coleman Groups Drill House Candidates With Oil-Funded Ads
But the most prolific groups focused on the House, where, in addition to four spots from Crossroads GPS, we answered five ads from the Congressional Leadership Fund, four from American Action Network, and three from Grover Norquist’s Americans for Tax Reform. Former Minnesota senator Norm Coleman is the chairman of both CLF, a super PAC, and AAN, a nonprofit that does not disclose its donors. CLF’s top individual contributors are billionaire Romney boosters Sheldon Adelson and Bob Perry, but it also recently received $2.5 million from Chevron – the “largest contribution from a publicly traded corporation” since the Citizens United decision – which is a good indication of who Big Oil expects to prioritize its interests in the next Congress.Read more after the jump.
Restore Our Future is running an ad in 10 states making the case that “Barack Obama’s economy isn’t working.” The pro-Romney super PAC blames President Obama for the consequences of the devastating recession he inherited, ignoring the fact that the economy is growing and the private sector has added 4.7 million jobs in the last 31 months. The group also blames Obama for high deficits fueled by Bush policies and the recession, as well as for the credit downgrade that resulted from the GOP’s reckless approach to the debt ceiling and refusal to consider any deficit-reduction measure that increases revenue.Read more after the jump.
We checked 26 new attack ads in the last week, including a trio that appeared late last Friday afternoon. The heavy volume makes sense given that the campaign is entering the home stretch, and it was powered by 15 new U.S. Chamber of Commerce ads, all of them in House races. Karl Rove’s Crossroads GPS (3 ads) and American Crossroads (2) combined to come in a distant second, and the remaining six came from the arch-conservative Club for Growth, the anti-immigration obsessives at NumbersUSA, the Iowa-based American Future Fund, Restore Our Future, and the abortion-focused Susan B. Anthony List’s new “Women Speak Out PAC.”Read more after the jump.
An ad from Restore Our Future dredges up an out-of-context quote from President Obama to suggest he believes 8 percent unemployment is “doing fine.” In reality, Obama was explaining that the private sector is steadily creating new jobs, while declining public-sector employment – a trend favored by conservatives – has slowed the recovery. The private sector has now added 4.6 million jobs over the last 30 consecutive months of growth. The ad also blames the president for America’s “crushing debt,” which exploded as a consequence of Bush administration policies and the recession, but fails to acknowledge that Republicans have rejected Obama’s debt-reduction proposals.Read more after the jump.
After last week’s wave of House ads, conservative outside groups focused most of their attention on the Senate this week. Of the 14 ads we fact-checked, eight of them targeted Senate hopefuls (five from Karl Rove’s Crossroads groups and three from the U.S. Chamber of Commerce), compared to only two hitting House candidates (both from the Congressional Leadership Fund). We also answered presidential ads from Restore Our Future, Americans for Job Security, and American Future Fund. Finally, Americans for Prosperity joined the conservative campaign to oust three Florida Supreme Court justices.Read more after the jump.
An ad from pro-Romney super PAC Restore Our Future complains about high federal debt and the slow economic recovery, asking if America is going “forward” or “backward.” Restore Our Future fails to note, however, that 4.6 million new jobs have been created over 30 consecutive months of private-sector growth, or that GOP-favored public-sector downsizing is dragging down the recovery. In addition, it’s Bush-era policies plus the global recession that set the U.S. on a path towards an explosion of the federal debt.Read more after the jump.
California Future Fund for Free Markets is breaking the irony barrier with an ad supporting Proposition 32, which purports to ban special interest money from state politics. The ad criticizes “deals cut in the shadows,” but CFFFM is funded entirely by a single $4 million donation from a similarly shadowy Iowa group that does not disclose donors but has ties to the Koch brothers. This hypocrisy has substantive implications as well: Prop 32 claims to end special interest spending in California politics, but leaves gaping loopholes for the billionaires who are funding the effort while cracking down much more tightly on union political spending.Read more after the jump.
Earlier this week, Crossroads GPS made the unusual decision to pull its support from a competitive Senate race, dropping planned ads attacking Missouri Democrat Claire McCaskill after tasteless comments on “legitimate rape” from her Republican opponent, Todd Akin, made headlines. The group’s multi-million-dollar assault on the airwaves continued across other states, however. Of the 13 ads we fact-checked this week, Crossroads GPS was responsible for five of them, attacking Tammy Baldwin in Wisconsin, Bill Nelson in Florida, Martin Heinrich in New Mexico, Sherrod Brown in Ohio, and Jon Tester in Montana. We also looked at three ads from Koch-funded Americans for Prosperity, three from the American Future Fund, one from the National Federation of Independent Business, and one from pro-Romney super PAC Restore Our Future.Most of the spots mentioned the Affordable Care Act, with many misrepresenting the facts to sell support for the law as support for a budget-busting behemoth. All three American Future Fund ads referred to the “$2 trillion health care law,” a willful distortion that counts the law’s costs but none of the savings to obscure the fact that the law reduces the deficit. Five of the ads (three from Crossroads GPS, one from AFP, and one from Restore Our Future) spread misinformation about the “failed” or “wasteful” stimulus, which actually helped save the economy from an even deeper recession.
Focus On Florida
This week showed particularly heavy interest in the Florida Senate race between Democrat Bill Nelson and Republican Connie Mack. Three separate conservative outside groups targeted the Sunshine State, each ad taking a different tack. Crossroads GPS took advantage of public confusion over the Affordable Care Act’s impact on Medicare, dishonestly suggesting to Florida’s seniors that their benefits will be cut and they’ll lose control of their health care decisions. American Future Fund focused on the national debt, though it also mentioned the health care law and threw in a gratuitous line calling for Nelson to “protect seniors.” NFIB, a business group that received $3.7 million from Crossroads GPS in 2010, took a more personal approach, highlighting a Florida business owner who claimed that a “conglomeration” of regulations were impairing his businesses’ ability to grow.Read more after the jump.
The latest ad from Restore Our Future contrasts Mitt Romney’s “life in the private sector” with familiar distortions of President Obama’s record. In reality, the “failed stimulus” helped rescue the economy from the recession, kept the unemployment rate from rising even more, and cut taxes for millions of Americans. Obama also inherited a projected deficit above $1 trillion, driven by Bush policies and the recession, and Republicans have consistently rejected the president’s deficit-reduction efforts.Read more after the jump.