Skip to comments.Tennessee Senate: Corker Goes After Ford's Family
Posted on 10/25/2006 3:56:19 PM PDT by PghBaldy
In the increasingly close Senate race to fill the seat being vacated by current Majority Leader Bill Frist, Republicans are increasingly homing in on one soft spot for current Democratic Rep. Harold Ford Jr.: his long political pedigree. Although former Chattanooga Mayor Bob Corker pledged initially to leave Ford's family members out of the race, he attacked them bluntly in a recent debate and a TV ad launched last week.
Ford's father, Harold Ford Sr., served as a congressman in the district currently represented by Ford for 22 years; seven other Fords have held political office, including positions in the state Senate.
But over the years, three Fords have been indicted. One relative, Harold Jr.'s father, was acquitted by a jury. Harold Jr.'s uncles faired differently: One was convicted of insurance fraud, while another is currently awaiting trial on federal bribery charges.
In an October 10 debate held in Chattanooga, Corker focused on Ford Sr.'s decision to become a lobbyist for Fannie Mae after leaving Congress, suggesting a possible conflict of interest. It came only three days after he publicly accused Ford's family of being involved in "machine-type politics."
"When you went on the [House] Financial Services Committee," Corker said to Ford Jr., "why was it that within 60 days your dad became the registered lobbyist for Fannie Mae to lobby you in Washington ? Why was itwith all the things that have happened with Fannie Mae, all the irregularities, all the billions of dollars that have been lostwhy is it that you continued while you were on that committee to talk about what a wonderful job they'd been doing?"
Ford responded to that charge by telling his opponent, "Attacking my father has no place in this campaign."
"My father is too good of a person, too decent of a person, and raised me too right to do any of the things that my opponent [charges]," said Ford, a bit flustered. "I didn't think he could stoop any lower into the gutter than he already has in this campaign, but it looks as if rock bottom hasn't hit there yet."
Later he added, "Neither my dad nor any member of my family has ever lobbied me, nor would I allow them to."
The focus on Ford's family continued last week, when Corker unleashed a new ad, entitled "Memphis Man on the Street," focused on what presumably "regular folk" in Memphis, Ford's hometown, said about the prospective Senate candidate, who has served that area in Congress since 1997.
"Our mayor says the Ford family is trying to tie up every political spot in Tennessee," one man alleges. Another adds, "The Ford family business is politics."
Other lines in the ad refer to Ford's upbringing in Washington, D.C., while his father was in Congress. ("Went to some prep school in D.C., didn't he?") Or they focus on his movie star good looksPeople chose Ford as one of "America's 50 Most Beautiful People" in 2001.
"Whoo-eee," says one man. "He sure looks good on TV!"
In a sharply worded release in response to the ad, Ford campaign spokesman Michael Powell said Corker "has proven how morally and intellectually bankrupt his campaign has become. He has no ideas, he has no vision, and now we know he has no integrity."
One of the latest polls of the race shows that the race is still very tight.
And there have been any number of stories on 43's family. What's good for the goose...
Corker should have been doing this from the get go. The Ford family is fair game. Does anyone seriously think if the shoe were on the other foot the democrats would not attack the family? This is VERY effective in TN.
Nothing biased about that headline. If a Republican candidate's family had as much legal baggage as this bunch in Ford's family, the headline would read "Democratic Candidate Raises Questions About Troubling Family History of Republican."
Let's hope they're up to the task again this year.
Even the very Democrat black racist mayor of Memphis says that the Fords are a machine that needs to be stopped, and has not endorsed Jr. to my knowledge.
I hope this doesnt backfire. Some voters don't like the sins of father ads. I seen it work before and at other times backfire
* Link to youtube, who happens to be reviewing comments on political advertisements like the one above and deciding which ones they "like" or not. They don't seem to like the conservative ones.
Videos can be flagged as "hate speech." I expect this to happen shortly with this video. The left can't stand being mocked.
I agree, I don't think children can be blamed for their family's faults. The issue I think is legit is the Fannie Mae connection. That is par for the course in DC, and needs to be addressed.
I don't know but this is a risky move if you ask me.
It's about time. Someone had to do it and no DEMOCRAT was going to.
Have the fords ever had real jobs? Sound a lot like the Kennedy mafia clan.
Get rich on the public trough.
They left out his aunt who was kicked out of the Tennessee Senate for election fraud.
Msybe I'm missing something here but if Corker and said 'your father is a crook and so are your uncles' that would have been attacking his family. Not necessarily wrongly so but attack just the same. If, as seems to be the case, he raises the issue of whether or not lobbying by family members that were former politicos to current family memebers that hold office raises the appearance of immpriority seems to be fully justified, even by pubbie Marcus of Queensbury rules!
Sorry for the typos and spelling, it's late for me.
Ophelia actuall has done nothing wrong herself.
Oh, yeah... don't forget Auntie Ophelia who ran for her brother's seat in the State Senate. Her lead in the race was made up of entirely dead people, with hundreds of other suspect votes cast in the district.
That doesn't include his aunt, who ran for a state Senate seat in the last election, was "elected" by 13 votes in a heavily Democratic district, only to have the election overturned when it was discovered that a large number of her voters resided in local cemeteries.
At least one, and I think two, of Ford, Sr.'s conspirators were convicted of major graft. The Clinton Justice Department allowed Ford to get his trial venue changed to West Tennessee, although the crimes were committed in East Tennessee (far away from home).
Get ready for major voter fraud coming out of Shelby County this time.
Ford is a frequent guest on Hallerin Hilton Hill (WNOX-FM in Knoxville).... a couple of years ago, he thought the reference to Cheney's daughter was "touching."
I agree. The only difference would be if it were a wife, and she had ill-gotten gains, and they co-mingled finances (like in a checking acct - read Bill & Hillary).
That was a hilarious ad, I had to watch it twice to verify it was really an RNC ad. Hopefully it won't backfire and Corker can pull this one out.
I'm guessing that Ford would now all about smut after his visits to the playboy party. He also may have learned a thing or two from an ex-girlfriend. I remember reading a few years ago that he dated a Georgetown University coed who wrote a sex column for the student newspaper. Nothing illegal about it, just interesting.
Its fair game too because the acorn usually doesn't fall far from the tree.
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