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Rev. Wright ad proposal given bipartisan scorn on Sunday shows

May 20, 2012|By Morgan Little
  • The Rev. Jeremiah Wright.
The Rev. Jeremiah Wright. (Rogelio V. Solis / Associated…)

Going against the partisan tendencies in Washington, both sides of the aisle readily took the opportunity to condemn the recently uncovered “super PAC” ad proposal that would have attempted to bring the Rev. Jeremiah A. Wright Jr. into the campaign discussion.

It takes something particularly noteworthy to lead Karl Rove and David Axelrod to agree on anything, but the proposed ad campaign, detailed earlier by The Times, seems to have done the trick.

Rove, in an appearance on "Fox News Sunday," was particularly dismissive of the proposal, which was originally sent to TD Ameritrade founder Joe Ricketts.

“Speaking from the perspective of the super PAC, you want to try to do things that you think will be helpful to the super PAC and not things that will be hurtful,” Rove said. “And frankly, trying to dredge up Jeremiah Wright, right or wrong, after this issue was litigated four years ago by John McCain deciding not to litigate it was stupid.”

Rove praised Mitt Romney's campaign for swiftly denouncing the proposal, saying, “It certainly sent a message to everyone in America what they wanted the campaign to be about.”

House Speaker John A. Boehner, while on ABC's “This Week,” leveled his own condemnation of the ad, and praise for Romney.

“This kind of nonsense shouldn't happen,” Boehner said, “The election's gonna be about the economy and getting Americans back to work, and I think Gov. Romney's prescriptions are much better.”

But Axelrod, while predictably against the proposal, disagreed with Rove's and Boehner's portrayals of Romney. When asked about the former Massachusetts governor's dismissal of the ad while on CNN's “State of the Union,” Axelrod said Romney's “sent the wrong signals.”

“Tepidly and reluctantly he did. But in February he actually raised the issue and said it was fair game. So you know the problem is you have to be consistent in your position,” Axelrod said.

Axelrod also repudiated speculation that bringing Wright back into the spotlight could, in turn, lead to the Obama campaign trying to take advantage of Romney's Mormon faith.

“We've said that's not fair game,” he said.

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