WASHINGTON — In a new video message being sent to millions of people, President Bush's reelection campaign casts Sen. John F. Kerry as a tool of the special interests he regularly denounces.
The spot has the flavor of a political campaign ad but is customized for the Internet users who were to receive it Thursday night. An advance copy was provided to Associated Press.
The one-minute spot depicts a woman surfing the Web. She finds a clip of Kerry, the Democratic front-runner, railing against "the influence peddlers and the special interests. We're coming, you're going!" he says.
The woman digs further into the Internet and finds news and watchdog reports on Kerry's campaign fundraising.
The nonpartisan Center for Responsive Politics found that during the last 15 years, Kerry, of Massachusetts, accepted the most campaign money from lobbyists of anyone in the Senate -- about $638,000. "Whew!" the woman says. "For what?"
"Kerry -- brought to you by the special interests."
The spot was to be e-mailed to about 6 million Bush backers.
Kerry's spokeswoman, Stephanie Cutter, said, "George Bush took more money from lobbyists in 2003 than John Kerry has in his entire career, and has managed to reward them handsomely for it too -- at the expense of the environment, our economy and the middle class."