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AFT Launches Radio Ads Backing Clinton

The American Federation of Teachers launched radio ads in Iowa today in support of Sen. Hillary Rodham Clinton's (D-N.Y.) presidential campaign, the second major union to weigh in on the Senator's behalf this week.

The 60-second radio ad features the voices of four women talking about their concerns for their children's futures. "Education is the key to everything," says one. "I'm supporting Hillary," says another. "She really knows what's going on," says a third. "When she walks in, she's gonna know what a president has to do."

The AFT ad is running statewide and the union has reserved radio time all the way through the Iowa caucuses on Jan. 3, according to a source familiar with the buy. The radio campaign by AFT syncs up nicely with the television effort by the American Federation of State County and Municipal Employees that we wrote about on The Fix earlier this week.

When the AFT and AFSCME ads are combined with the commercials the Clinton campaign is running, it ensures that Iowa voters will be inundated with positive information about the New York Senator in the month between now and the caucuses. AFT is also planning to do mailings, as part of a seven-figure multi-state effort by the union on Clinton's behalf. Clinton needs all the help she can get as polling in Iowa shows her in a three-way dead heat with Sen. Barack Obama (Ill.) and former Sen. John Edwards (N.C.).

Here at The Fix we are trying to keep track of all the independent expenditure activity in early primary and caucus states. Including the AFSMCE and AFT buys mentioned above, here's our running tally:

* Common Sense Issues -- A group funding automated phone calls into Iowa touting former Gov. Mike Huckabee's (Ark.) candidacy and with a website at Patrick Davis, a former political director at the National Republican Senatorial Committee, is heading up the effort.

*Foundation for a Secure and Prosperous America: An independent organization with ties to a former John McCain adviser (Rick Reed) and funded in large part by donors to the Arizona Senator. The group made a major splash last month when it launched an issue ad touting McCain's leadership on the Wounded Warrior Act.

*Working for Working Families: First reported on by Time's Mark Halperin, little is known of the group. Halperin speculates it could be an independent expenditure effort by the United Brotherhood of Carpenters and Joiners who has endorsed Edwards.

*Democratic Courage: An anti-Clinton group, Democratic Courage "launched" its first ad on Monday -- although questions remains about just how much money is behind the effort.

Are we missing anything? Let us know in the comment section.

By Chris Cillizza  |  December 6, 2007; 2:55 PM ET
Categories:  Eye on 2008  
Save & Share:  Send E-mail   Facebook   Twitter   Digg   Yahoo Buzz   StumbleUpon   Technorati   Google Buzz   Previous: Romney's "Faith in America" Speech: What Worked and What Didn't
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(Obama supporter)

Neither Gov. Huckabee nor the Clintons deserves particularly impressive marks on improving the quality of the public schools in Arkansas. While the Clintons took some positive steps to advance the state's schools, their efforts were matched and greatly exceeded by other states in the same period (Georgia and North Carolina, for example). Arkansas has made progress, but it still lingers in the lowest tier on most measures of school performance (including the measures taken before No Child Left Behind). Obviously, there are a lot of reasons for this result that were beyond the power of the Clintons or Huckabee to change, but it seems fair to conclude that they did less than they could have when they had the opportunity.

Posted by: wesfromGA | December 7, 2007 5:14 PM | Report abuse

Proud, I'd say:
Dear Santa, bring the troops home!

Posted by: urban4 | December 7, 2007 1:03 PM | Report abuse

Mike, Oooops, my bad. Ok, let me rephrase my question in an all-inclusive manner..

Not since 1987, has Congress gone so long in a calendar year before sending a single appropriations bill to the president. What are they they waiting for?

Christmakwanzachanukahsolstice? (there, I think that covers everybody)

p.s. Dear Santa, bring the troops an appropriation bill.

Posted by: proudtobeGOP | December 7, 2007 10:14 AM | Report abuse

Proud -- "Not since 1987, has Congress gone so long in a calendar year before sending a single appropriations bill to the president. What are they they waiting for? Santa Claus?"

You know better than to make a reference to Christmas -- especially when in reference to the Dems.

Please try to come up with something more secular like "holiday snow storms" or "the month of January".

Posted by: USMC_Mike | December 7, 2007 12:32 AM | Report abuse

It is possible that Senator Clinton is the best candidate. However, even though many may like the policies that Senator Clinton proposes, they should also consider her record, just as Senator Clinton insists.
The last Clinton Administration, when faced with the fact that protection rackets where assaulting, torturing and murdering people with poison and radiation, chose to avoid its responsibilities to incarcerate the criminals and to protect the citizenry.
Instead, they made a deal with the criminal gang stalker protection rackets to leave them alone and to consequently abandon the citizenry.
Do we want a President who sells out the citizenry for votes?
Do we want a President who sends a "crime does pay" message to society?
Would you vote for a President who signed nonaggression deals with the KKKlan or the Nazi party? Gangs that torture with poison and radiation are much like the KKKlan and Nazi Party.
We do not need a sellout President. We need a principled leader President.
If you are one of the few who do not know what the above refers to, do a web search for "gang stalking" to see the tip of the dirtberg. Please do it before you decide to reply to my post. Here let me make it easy for you:

Posted by: avraamjack | December 6, 2007 8:47 PM | Report abuse

So what "goodies" did Hillary promise this organization to get their endorsement? Probably ineffectual. The voters of Iowa don't need a bunch of high priced ads from a third party to explain to them how to evaluate a candidate. They have seen and heard plenty of Hillary and they simply do not like her. I think she is toast in Iowa. I suspect her best strategy now is to focus on NH or just resign get it over with.

Posted by: zb95 | December 6, 2007 7:48 PM | Report abuse

Thanks, Loudoun, that's very helpful. It seems to me that the (un)fair tax is worse than VAT. It may not be a bad idea to replace at least part of the income tax with VAT, but it could be introduced only slowly, because otherwise domestic consumption would crash.
But that may make the tax system more complicated, not simpler.

Posted by: urban4 | December 6, 2007 6:22 PM | Report abuse

urban: The major difference is that a VAT is paid at each stage of the process, from manufacturing to assembly to wholesaling to retailing, with rebates at each stage to prevent paying tax on tax, otherwise known as cascading. So by the time the finished product gets to the consumer, the VAT has mostly been paid already.

A national sales tax would simply be paid in its entirety by the consumer.

VATs are used in many major countries but in none of them is the VAT a replacement for the income tax.

Posted by: Spectator2 | December 6, 2007 6:05 PM | Report abuse

Merit pay, more charter schools, and less ideology are needed in our public schools. The NEA is seen in a lot of areas as hindering rather than helping the process. That endorsement may hurt a candiate more than help in the Granite State. "Live Free or Die"

Posted by: Smokescreen | December 6, 2007 5:42 PM | Report abuse

"the poll may indicate that outside west TX and NM hispanics do not know BR is hispanic"

And who could blame them? I mean, is there possibly a whiter name than *Bill Richardson*? In fact, I think he stole that name from a hard-working American.

Maybe he should change his name to Carlos or something, that should help get him up over 3%.

Posted by: proudtobeGOP | December 6, 2007 5:36 PM | Report abuse

I noticed your earlier post about the sales tax (prefer not to use fairtax) being different from VAT. How so?

Posted by: urban4 | December 6, 2007 5:36 PM | Report abuse

mark: for more in-depth articles by bartlett on the fairtax, looks for articles he published in a journal called Tax Notes.

Posted by: Spectator2 | December 6, 2007 5:29 PM | Report abuse

Greedy Teachers? How about inept, incompetent, failing, ideological?

That more accurately decribes the education industry backing the UNELECTIBLE hillary.

To path to fix american education's roadmap is a simple one:

1. Fire all administrators and replace them with property managers, a single lawyer for each district, and licenced psychologists for every counseling position. Administrators are largely failed teachers bumped up to peter-principle jobs in admin and have done a terrible job over the last 40 years.

2. Mandate no more than 20 kids per class ANYWHERE IN AMERICA

3. End ALL bilingual education and require english-only language immersion until the non english speaking students read, write, and speak without accent. THEN they can actually fiunction in American society and should take the rest of their educational subjects in english with the other students

4. Eliminate all sports and replace them with gym style exercise programs for EVERY student until such time as there are no obese children in our schools - then the sports can begin again.

5. All students must declare a major area of study in highschool.

6. Double the time spent in math and science classes for all students

7. Teachers should be prohibited from teaching ANY class they did not major, or minor in at university. Eliminate all unaccredited teachers.

8. Eliminate tenure below the university level. Teachers fail because there is no consequence to failure in the American education industry.

9. Create a new subject to be taught at all grades called "how to be a success in america" for goal setting, goal achievement, concepts of capitalism, and personal responsibility.

There. Done. Go catch up with the tiny Polish education system - it far exceeds our own.

Posted by: onestring | December 6, 2007 5:23 PM | Report abuse

dcgrasso1, I have saved the info you provided.

proud, you stated McCain's case on IA/undocs so well that I have copied it to use in emails with friends.

LV, the poll may indicate that outside west TX and NM hispanics do not know BR is hispanic. And I was able to relocate the WSJ op-ed with ease once you reminded me of Bartlett's name. Thanks again.

Posted by: mark_in_austin | December 6, 2007 5:15 PM | Report abuse

If trends continue, the Iowa democratic nomination may not be a dead heat much longer. In the Real Clear Politics poll averages Obama has overtaken Clinton.

Also, the latest strategic vision poll shows Obama leading clinton 32% to 25% above the margin of error.

Posted by: urban4 | December 6, 2007 5:00 PM | Report abuse

kurt, dcgrasso, jimD, Thanks you guys! :)

Posted by: proudtobeGOP | December 6, 2007 4:47 PM | Report abuse

Many people may not realize that HRC was not the darling of the teacher's unions back in the 1980's in Arkansas. Governor Bill Clinton and First Lady Hillary ran afoul of the NEA due to their views on teacher testing.
However, Hillary is attractive to educators due to No Child Left Behind mandates that the Bush Administration supported. NCLB gave mandates to the states without funding. While wanting children to succeed is a noble goal, the NCLB is not the way to achieve it.
The federal govenment should not have any role in education. Education is a reserved power under the 10th amendment. Education policy should be set by the states not Congress.

Posted by: rogden71 | December 6, 2007 4:44 PM | Report abuse


I have heard the same as kurtrk - I was going to ask the same question

Posted by: jimd52 | December 6, 2007 4:41 PM | Report abuse


You need to know that Walter Reed will not accept cards that are not addressed to someone by name. However, the Red Cross announced a program yesterday that WILL. The address for that is:

We Support You During Your Recovery!
c/o The American Red Cross
P.O. Box 419
Savage, MD 20763-0419

Here's a link with all the information:

Posted by: dcgrasso1 | December 6, 2007 4:40 PM | Report abuse


It is my understanding that any correspondence labelled without a specific addressee's name (i.e., Any Recovering Soldier) will be returned unopened or discarded. This was put into place for security reasons, although I do not understand why such mail couldn't just be screened.

Posted by: kurtrk | December 6, 2007 4:36 PM | Report abuse

You are right about that AndyR3. It's time to set the record straight about who is telling the truth to Americans.

McCain has pledged to secure the border, but additionally says that a secure border will contribute to addressing our immigration problem most effectively if we also:

Recognize the importance of building strong allies in Mexico and Latin America who reject the siren call of authoritarians like Hugo Chavez, support freedom and democracy, and seek strong domestic economies with abundant economic opportunities for their citizens.

Recognize the importance of pro-growth policies -- keeping government spending in check, holding down taxes, and cutting unnecessary regulatory burdens -- so American businesses can hire and pay the best.

Recognize the importance of a flexible labor market to keep employers in business and our economy on top. It should provide skilled Americans and immigrants with opportunity.

Recognize the importance of assimilation of our immigrant population, which includes learning English, American history and civics, and respecting the values of a democratic society.

Recognize that America will always be that "shining city upon a hill," a beacon of hope and opportunity for those seeking a better life built on hard work and optimism.

Posted by: proudtobeGOP | December 6, 2007 4:28 PM | Report abuse

"won't help them if she gets elected president, she'll throw them under the bus of corporate interests along with all the other 'average Americans' she claims to represent."

That statement is true of Rudy, Romney, and Thompson as well. McCain (and maybe Huck) is the only one of the GOPers that gives a darn for immigrants (legal or illegal) in this country.

Posted by: AndyR3 | December 6, 2007 4:13 PM | Report abuse

loudon, according to your cited poll, 41% of hispanic voters said Ds do a better job of handling illegal immigration, and 59% of them support Hillary Clinton.

But, what has Hillary Clinton done to "handle illegal immigration"? She has turned a blind eye to the problem of 20 million illegal immigrants in this country and has done absolutely nothing in her time as a Senator to achieve progress on this issue or any other tough issue. She is a sham.

It is a sad fact that some folks actually believe her lies. She won't help them if she gets elected president, she'll throw them under the bus of corporate interests along with all the other 'average Americans' she claims to represent.

Time to wake up and smell the cafe`

Posted by: proudtobeGOP | December 6, 2007 3:57 PM | Report abuse

More bad news for the Know-Nothings, I mean the GOP:

Posted by: Spectator2 | December 6, 2007 3:42 PM | Report abuse

In July, Senate Armed Services Committee Chairman Carl Levin, Senate Committee on Veterans' Affairs Chairman Daniel Akaka, Armed Services Committee Ranking Member John McCain, and senior Armed Services Committee Member John Warner hailed passage of the Dignified Treatment of Wounded Warriors Act, which addresses shortfalls in the care of our wounded warriors.

Senator John McCain submitted the following statement for the Congressional Record on Senate passage of the "Dignified Treatment of Wounded Warriors Act" :

"Mr. President, today the Senate adopted, by unanimous consent, legislation that will make a significant difference in the lives of America's wounded warriors and veterans. I applaud the passage of the "Dignified Treatment of Wounded Warriors Act" and the 3.5 percent across the board pay raise for the men and women of the U. S. military.

Failure to pass the defense authorization bill will curtail many needed initiatives to support our military personnel and their families and to continue the fight on the global war on terror.

"I call on the Senate leadership to resume consideration of the defense authorization bill at the earliest possible time, so that these and many other critical pieces of the legislation will become law for the benefit of our troops.

Swift passage of the National Defense Authorization Act for 2008, coupled with support for our wounded warriors and hard working troops together represent the full measure of support for our military forces that they need, and that they unquestionably deserve."

Not since 1987, has Congress gone so long in a calendar year before sending a single appropriations bill to the president. What are they they waiting for? Santa Claus?

When you are making out your Christmas card list this year, please include the following:
A Recovering American Soldier
c/o Walter Reed Army Medical Center
6900 Georgia Avenue, NW
Washington,D.C. 20307-5001

Posted by: proudtobeGOP | December 6, 2007 3:27 PM | Report abuse

Get ready for a flurry of posts about "those greedy teachers."

Posted by: Spectator2 | December 6, 2007 3:06 PM | Report abuse

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