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Political Advertising

May 26, 2007 | TIM RUTTEN
ALL the fizz aside, new media have the capacity to create distinctions with a difference. National politics is one of the places where that may be occurring, and that's a possibility to which, in Mrs. Willy Loman's unforgettable words, "attention must be paid," especially by the country's news media. Consider the odd situation in which both the Republican and Democratic parties now find themselves as the presidential election cycle spins into formal earnest.
April 26, 2007 | David G. Savage, Times Staff Writer
The Supreme Court signaled Wednesday that it was likely to permit a return to broadcast ads next election season that tell voters to "contact" a candidate and "send him a message." These were known as "issue ads" by their sponsors, but most everyone else understood they were intended to help or hurt a candidate running for federal office. Federal law has long prohibited corporations from directly supporting candidates.
April 25, 2007 | David G. Savage, Times Staff Writer
Political campaign officials and election lawyers will be watching closely today when the Supreme Court takes up a case to decide whether more corporate and union-funded ads can be broadcast before next year's elections. At issue is a provision in the McCain-Feingold Act that bans the use of corporate or union money to pay for radio or TV ads that mention a candidate just before the election.
January 20, 2007 | David G. Savage, Times Staff Writer
The Supreme Court set the stage Friday for striking down a part of the McCain-Feingold campaign finance law that bars the broadcast of corporate and union-funded ads just prior to an election. Three years ago, the justices narrowly upheld the McCain-Feingold Act of 2002 and its rule against corporate-funded broadcast ads, which was adopted to prevent powerful interests from using their money to sway elections in the final weeks of a campaign.
December 22, 2006 | David G. Savage, Times Staff Writer
Cutting the first hole in a key campaign funding law, a federal court here ruled Thursday that corporations, unions and special interest groups had a free-speech right to run some broadcast ads during the campaign season that refer to candidates seeking election. In a 2-1 ruling, the judges said "genuine issue ads" that refer to a lawmaker's pending business in the capital may be the subject of corporate-funded ads.
October 28, 2006 | Richard Simon and Ricardo Alonso-Zaldivar, Times Staff Writers
In the waning days of this year's closely contested midterm election, attacks aimed at impugning a candidate's character and morals are increasingly dominating campaigns, raising questions about the appropriate boundaries and tenor of the debate. On Friday Jim Webb, the Democratic Senate candidate in Virginia, came under harsh attack for explicit sexual passages he wrote in a novel several years ago -- the latest twist in his tight race with Republican incumbent George Allen.
October 20, 2006 | From Times Wire Reports
The Republican Party will begin airing a hard-hitting ad this weekend that warns of more cataclysmic terrorist attacks against the U.S. The ad portrays Osama bin Laden and quotes his threats against America dating to February 1998. "These are the stakes," the ad concludes. "Vote Nov. 7." Brian Jones, a spokesman for the Republican National Committee, said the ad would run on national cable beginning Sunday. Democrats denounced the ad as scaremongering.
October 19, 2006 | George Skelton, Sacramento
It's the fall rutting season for politicians. You can observe them trying to vanquish their rivals and court the voters. All's fair in politics and mating, their instincts tell them. Most will resort to about anything to win the prize on election day. But there should be boundaries even for politicians -- lines never to cross. I draw a line at fabricating facts -- or, less politely, lying. It casts doubts on a candidate's credibility and character.
September 26, 2006 | Michael Finnegan and Dan Morain, Times Staff Writers
Hoping to prop up state treasurer and Democratic gubernatorial nominee Phil Angelides, public employee unions plan to launch statewide television ads today that resemble the spots they used to inflict major political damage on Gov. Arnold Schwarzenegger last year. The spots renew labor's attack on Schwarzenegger's character, with a nurse, firefighter, police officer and several teachers portraying him as untrustworthy.
September 9, 2006 | From Times Wire Reports
Democratic Senate candidate Jim Webb has a television ad ready to air next week featuring praise from his late boss President Reagan -- and Nancy Reagan called on him to cancel it, saying the ad was "neither authorized nor appropriate." Webb was Reagan's Navy secretary before switching to the Democratic Party. A campaign spokesman in Richmond said the campaign felt the ad was proper.
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