What Fresh Hell Is This?

September 14, 2010

Anti-Altmire Ad

Last night before heading to bed for some still jet-lagged sleep I saw on my TeeVee an anti-Altmire ad sponsored by a group called "Americans for Job Security."

Pa2010 has the story and the ad:
A conservative group that bills itself as business-friendly is running TV ads targeting Congressman Jason Altmire (D-4) and Democratic congressional candidate Bryan Lentz.

The ads from Americans for Job Security criticizes Altmire for claiming to independent from the Democratic leadership, and Lentz for his spending votes in Harrisburg.
So who's Americans for Job Security?Hard to say. According to its website its:
Since our founding more than ten years ago Americans for Job Security (AJS) has been at the forefront of an explosion of the marketplace of ideas. During this time AJS has put forth a pro-growth, pro-jobs message to the American people.
And from the mini-FAQ at that page:
Who are your members? Our members are businesses, business leaders and entrepreneurs from around the country. AJS does not disclose or discuss its membership further than this. Too often politicians or the media define an organization or message not by the merits of the argument, but rather by the perception of the people associated with it. We would rather the people decide on merits instead of name-calling.
Sourcewatch has some more:
Americans for Job Security (AJS) spun off in the late 1990s from a group called The Coalition: Americans Working for Real Change, a group that had been formed by the U.S. Chamber of Commerce to counteract the extensive soft money spending by the AFL-CIO starting in the 1996 elections.

Later in a FEC Complaint, Public Citizen wrote that AJS is a "sham front group that would be better called Corporations Influencing Elections ... masquerading as a non-profit to conceal its funders and the scope of its electioneering activities,"the Center for Responsive Politics wrote in April 2007. Incorporated October 1997 in Virginia, AJS was described by the Center as "pro-Republican", "pro-business", and "established to directly counter labor's influence".
In a word: Astroturf.

Oh and sourcewatch has this funny:
In December 2005, Sen. Rick Santorum ran an interne that used the same ad footage as that in an ad "placed on TV stations" by Americans for Job Security. Blogger mantooth of The Square Circuit Blog commented that "this wouldn't be news, of course, if it were not borderline unethical. It seems clear that two ads--one for Santorum directly, and one in support of Santorum--that used EXACTLY THE SAME FOOTAGE were probably cooked up by the same people. But no! say the parties. Just a fantastic coincidence."

"According to the Wilkes-Barre/Scranton NEWS-LEADER, 'Michael Dubke, president of the Republican-leaning third-party group, and John Brabender, Santorum's media consultant, each denied that the two sides had collaborated in any way. They each said it was a coincidence they used the same stock footage in their respective ads'," mantooth related.
Good to know who the players are.

Good to be home, by the way.


Ol' Froth said...

Whaaaaa??? You mean that after Altmire started running to the right, conservatives still don't like him and are unlikely to vote for him?

Mike said...

Yesterday morning some Rothfus (Altmire's opponent) supporters were on Perry Highway waving Rothfus signs. We've all seen people on the side of roads supporting candidates, so you can picture what it should look like.

These were all older white guys wearing coats and ties. It was a bizarre sight.