Skip to comments.The Anti-Kerry, Anti-CFR Ad
Posted on 10/27/2004 2:11:45 PM PDT by Congressman BillybobEdited on 11/01/2004 9:28:12 AM PST by Admin Moderator. [history]
Most of you know my contempt for the new campaign finance reform act, because it violates the First Amendment. Most of you know my low opinions of John Kerry, dating back to dealing with him in college. I have shot a 60-second TV commercial addressing both these subjects. Now I need your help in getting that ad on the air.
To backtrack a bit: The McCain-Feingold Act (campaign finance reform) has one specially odious provision. It tells citizens and groups of citizens they cannot run TV commercials that name or show a federal candidate within 60 days of a general election, or 30 days of a primary. The ban applies unless such citizens place themselves under the jurisdiction and control of the Federal Election Commission.
In my opinion, this is a frontal assault on the free speech rights of ordinary Americans. At one time, the Supreme Court agreed. In , 1957, the Court held that political free speech was the most important of all, because without political free speech, the fairness of elections would be threatened. And without free and fair elections, all other rights of Americans would also be threatened.
I cited the Sweezy case in my last brief in the Supreme Court, in McConnell v. FEC. That was the test case on campaign finance reform, decided in December, 2003. To my deep regret, five Justices voted to uphold the ad ban in the law. Four Justices filed a stiff dissent, saying exactly what I had argued, that the ban savaged the First Amendment.
But that is not the end of it. All constitutional reviews of any law has two steps. The first is to determine whether the law is unconstitutional on its face. The second challenge is based on the facts of an actual case. It determines whether the law is unconstitutional as applied. One purpose of my ad is to create a test case that might go to the Supreme Court on the campaign law as applied.
The meat of my ad discusses what I observed about John Kerry at Yale. He was an arrogant, self-centered, social climber. Several times I debated on behalf of the Conservative Party of the Yale Political Union, against John Kerrys Liberal Party. In those debates, the good guys (that means us) usually won. But the new law says I cannot run a commercial that says that, within 60 days of the election.
Below is the shooting script for this ad. Also included is a click link for three versions of the ad. The short version is for those with dial-up access. The full version links should only be used by those with broadband, because otherwise it will take forever to download. Trust me, I tried it.
Any reader is welcome to take down and use or distribute as they choose any copy of this ad on the Net or anywhere else (as long as it is used in full with no censorship). Thats all well and good. But the key point, the reason for this plea, is to get the ad broadcast.
I deliberately said not a word in the ad about my possible plans to run for Congress in the 11th District of North Carolina, in 2006. (That depends on the outcome of the 2004 election, and sufficient volunteers and fund-raising.) The content of the ad is two subjects John Kerrys inadequacies, and the assault on the First Amendment by the new law. Both of these are national subjects, not local. They are exactly the same in Nevada, New Jersey or New Mexico, as in North Carolina.
So I request everyone who has any kind of solid contact with the broadcast industry to take what steps you can to get this broadcast. It can be UHF or VHF. It can be independent, or part of any network or group. I have contacted all five of the broadcast stations that serve western NC, one located here, and the others across the border in upstate South Carolina.
Four of the five have said no to the ad. In each case, the lawyers for the station agreed that the ad puts my neck on the line, but pose no risk to the station itself. All agreed that the ad is interesting or challenging or better than most political ads. But all agreed that the ad was too controversial.
Plan A was to run the ad on the one station based in Asheville. It is too crowded with must carry ads (ads by current candidates that stations must carry and cannot censor). The South Carolina stations are Plan B. All have time available, but three have said no. The last one might say no as well. Plan C is this request addressed to my friends and associates on the Net.
To do its intended job, this ad needs to be broadcast somewhere, and fast. So I ask all who would like to help, to wrack your brains and patrol your Rolodexes. Use any contact you have to find one TV station somewhere in the US which will run this ad. (Practical matter: I stand ready, of course, pay the full cost up front before the ad runs.)
Do what you can, and get back to me on the Net or by e-mail. Time is of the essence.
Here is the shooting script (the click links are at the end):
Text for Anti-CFR Ad to Run on Broadcast TV
[Shot at home. 80-mile view of Blue Ridge Mountains in background.]
I'm John Armor -- and this ad may be illegal. Small gifts paid for it.
Ive known John Kerry 41 years. When he joined the Yale Political Union, I was an officer and veteran debater. Here's what I saw:
Kerry was arrogant. He thought we must believe him, because HE was John Kerry
[Show photo of Kerry in his shaggy-hair mode before Congress in 1971. Photo dissolves into Kerry pointing with his bony finger of doom, today. Give captions for both photos John Kerry, Senate war-crimes testimony, 1971 John Kerry, campaigning for President, 2004]
How has he changed? More money, more wrinkles, more arrogance. But still self-centered. Should such a man command the American military -- in time of war?
What makes this ad illegal? A divided Supreme Court approved the campaign finance reform act. [Use gestures for quote marks.]
It says we cant broadcast ads that name a federal candidate, 60 days before an election. But thats EXACTLY when we want to talk about candidates. I'm doing that. If the feds don't like it, they can find me here:
[Displayed on screen to end of ad:
Box 243, Highlands, NC 28741]
I'm John Armor. I not only approve this ad, I wrote every word of it.
- 30 -
This link should take you to the short version. Click links on this page allow you to receive two, larger versions of the ad which should NOT be used by anyone lacking broadband access.
- 30 -
Second, I ask that all who read this, please refer it to any ping list you are in. I hope most of the Ping Masters on FR will decide this is of interest and get the word out. It's not only important that as many people see this as possible, it is also important that they see it as SOON as possible.
John / Billybob
No link! Just get the "doesn't exist on this server" message.
Great ad, but CFR aside, I don't think you have enough time to put it on air before next Tuesday.
Ok, got the link now. Bad news though, even for broadband users (my cable modem will download at 3000 Kbps, T1 speed), it's a mega-slow download. Don't try watching live... it's an hour-long download, at around 6-7 KBps max speed from this server.
See link in post #3. John
So, yes, it CAN be done.
John / Billybob
If you're making a point of the ad not mentioning your possible run for Congress, you need to quickly get another website address (even if it's just one that immediately redirects to the existing one). www.ArmorforCongress.com is pretty plain about your future plans.
Amen to all of the above!
Only of tangential relevance, but, using Title 10, Section 311 of the United States Code as the model, what are the odds of getting the entire country declared a "free speech zone" so we can get rid of those odious cages?
I'm not hiding my situation by any means. There is a hotly contested race here, right now, between Taylor (the longtime incumbent) and Keever (the liberal Democrat). Obviously, which one is the target has a lot to do with my thinking.
Second, as I set out in chapter and verse on my website, one of my book was on reelection of incumbents to Congress. I have a very clear idea of the minimum funds and volunteers needed for a creditable campaign. I'm not into hopeless efforts. If it's not realistic, I ain't gonna do it.
I considered the idea of using a neutral e-mail address. I concluded that would be like I was trying to hide something. Didn't want to give that impression. Right or wrong, that's what I considered.
Oh, PLEASE do not use the "quotation marks" gesture! It let's people take you less seriously.
I didn't realize you had your own production company. In that case, go for it!
You know you have my support 100%, and all of our appreciation. CFR has to be trounced. You are doing great work, and I hope your name will be held in high esteem in future law school texts.
Spiff, are you still able to work miracles?
You need to post this again because it didn't get the attention it deserves. A post this evening for the night crowd and a repost in the morning for the morning crowd would be good.
Hey, you know a lot of people. Can you get some attention on this thread for Congressman Billybob?
Click Here if you want to be added to or removed from this list.
A big ole South Carolina BUMP to you John!
Posted by upchuck, trying to live up to the Swampmeister's standards for a week or so.
Accckkkkk! I left off the FReeper name list.
Thanks for the ping, upchuck.
A great job as usual, Congressman.
Stand by. By midnight EDT there should be other versions of the ad posted -- all have the same content but some may better suit narrow bandwidths.
DON'T download the 22MB file -- it's interlaced video for TV. If you wasted time on that, sorry.
Criminal Number 18F
I don't remember Kerry from back then, but I remember Calvin Hill!
After the decision in Brown v. Board of Education he did something of great courage. That decision, of course, did nothing to integrate private schools. Henry Callard went to the Board and said, "I am going to integrate Gilman. And if the Board doesn't approve that, it can have my resignation."
Instead, some of the Board resigned. Callard stayed. My school changed. And one of the first students who came in was Calvin Hill. Later, his son Grant Hill also attended. Callard's example of principle and courage has remained with me all my life.
If there is a cause worth sticking your neck out for, this is the one! If you don't have media contacts, contribute money. I did.
=== If there is a cause worth sticking your neck out for, this is the one!
"It will be a signature. I won't hesitate. It will probably take about, you know, about three seconds to get to the '[Middle Initial]' I may hesitate on the period, and then rip through the '[Surname]' "
(Oh, please don't kill him ... this Strict Constitutionalist was just kidding. Kinda.)
CFR Ping list bump
Thanks for the flag.
John, you rock!
If you want on the list, FReepmail me. This IS a high-volume PING list...
Gonna be a busy weekend, isn't it?
Great ad--hope it can be broadcast in time!
Pinging for an update. Have you been able to find someone to air the ad?
The only good opportunity seems to be in Hawaii. A good friend who's a former member of its legislature and a businessman there, told me that time might be available in Hawaii.
In order to stick a thumb in the eye of the FEC, the ad needs to run by 11 a.m. Eastern, on the 3rd. That's when the polls close in Hawaii, and the 2004 election is over. I'll put up a notice when/if I have slots for the ad on air.
It will be a privilege to send bail money for you ... ;-)
The FEC, to the best of my knowledge, has never sought to send anyone to jail, not even Lyndon LaRouche. So, I'm only looking at harrassment and fines. LOL.
It's short for Campaign Finance Reform Law.
What if the FEC yawns? Will you sue yourself? :-)
Even if I am irrelevant to the case, that case WILL arise. And it WILL go all the way to the US Supreme Court. (And, by the time it gets there, the Court may have two or three new Justices, so it is not preordained that the law will be upheld).