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THE RECALL CAMPAIGN | AD WATCH

Arnold Schwarzenegger

October 06, 2003

MoveOn.org, a Web site that is an organizer for liberal causes, unveiled a new television ad Friday that attacks Arnold Schwarzenegger and urges Californians to vote against the recall. The 30-second spot is slated to air across the state today and Monday. The group says it will spend $500,000.

Title: Arnold

Producer: Zimmerman & Markman: Move-On

Script: Black and white portraits of women, young and old, of different races, some with young girls, appear in succession as a narrator says: "If you're a woman, or your mother is a woman, or your wife, or your daughter, or your sister, or there's a woman at work

Accuracy: The claim that Schwarzenegger "has a serious problem with women" is so broad it's impossible to determine its accuracy. Several women have come forward to say that Schwarzenegger groped or made unwanted sexual advances toward them. Schwarzenegger has said most of the allegations contained in a Los Angeles Times story on the subject are untrue but acknowledged unspecified wrongdoing. He said he "behaved badly" sometimes and apologized to anyone offended by his actions. Supporters have come to Schwarzenegger's defense, saying he treats women with respect. The "Terminator 3" quote refers to a scene in the movie. The woman Schwarzenegger is referring to is an actress who played a killer robot in the movie.

Analysis: The ad is an attempt to capitalize on the furor over Schwarzenegger's alleged behavior toward women. The montage of photos is aimed at personalizing the allegations. In fact, the ad takes great pains to remind viewers that a woman in their lives -- whether it be a sister, a mother or a co-worker -- could be a victim of unwanted groping. Rather than focusing on the actor's positions on issues, the ad tries to call into question Schwarzenegger's character.

Los Angeles Times

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