This blog continues the discussion that we began with Epic Journey: The 2008 Elections and American Politics (Rowman and Littlefield, 2009).The latest book in this series is Divided We Stand: The 2020 Elections and American Politics.
Conservative super-PACs are attempting to gin up disillusionment among President Obama’s supporters and keep their turnout low in November’s election, in part by highlighting his ties to Wall Street.
Within the past month, three separate ads — two from the American Future Fund and one from Crossroads GPS [These groups are 501(c)(4)s, not Super PACS. -- ed.]— have assailed Obama from broadly comparable perspectives. Especially striking are the American Future Fund ads which make the kind of anti-Wall Street argument heard largely on the left.
The outside groups' message contrasts with the one being pushed by Mitt Romney, the Republican candidate, who has called the Obama's "the most anti-business administration" since President Carter's.
Asked whether at least part of the super-PACs intention was to persuade voters who might otherwise support Obama to stay home, Republican strategist Keith Appell said:
“Sure. It helps. Part of [the purpose] is to raise questions in that 2008 Obama voter’s mind. Many of them may feel so disillusioned by his record. So, yes, I think that’s part of it.”
Appell, who is not affiliated with either of the groups behind the ads, also noted that they could fuel the sense that there was no material difference between Obama and Romney with regard to their closeness to the business world.
“If they are both cut from the same cloth people will say, ‘A plague on both your houses,’” he said.