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Sweet blog extra: Iowa Obama spot touts refusal to take PAC, federal lobbyist cash for '08 warchest. Did take from "Washington" interests before presidential run.

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WASHINGTON--White House hopeful Sen. Barack Obama (D-Ill.) touts ethics in a new Iowa spot for this leadoff presidential vote state. The opening scene in the ad is of his announcement speech last February in Springfield. Obama in the spot said he is "extremely proud" that his campaign has refused money from political action committees and federal lobbyists. Former Sen. John Edwards (D-N.C.) also has bragging rights--he only took $20 from PACs.

Obama did take money from PACs and lobbyists for his state senate, U.S. House and U.S. Senate campaigns. "He is leading by example," a narrator in the ad said.Obama embraced the self-imposed ban on PAC and lobbyist money only when he opened his presidential campaign fund in February.

A PAC fact: PACs tend not to be major players in presidential campaign primaries.

Of the $265 million raised by the entire field of 2008 candidates (not counting transfers in and candidate contributions) only $2,215,061 of that came from PACs.

How much did Obama "sacrifice" by not taking PAC money. Let's look at the leading PAC receipient, who turns out to be chief rival Sen. Hillary Rodham Clinton (D-N.Y.) In the first half of the year, she collected $532,046 from PACS, according to an analysis by the Federal Election Commission, followed by Sen. Chris Dodd (D-Ct.) at $458,194; Sen. John McCain (R-Ariz.) who received $393,812; GOP former Massachusetts Gov. Mitt Romney collected $222,900; former GOP New York city Mayor Rudy Giuliani took in $219,158; New Mexico Gov. Bill Richardson, $126,800; Sen. Joe Biden,(D-Del.); $65,200; Sen. Sam Brownback (R-Ks.) $40,635; Rep. Dennis Kucinich (D-Ohio), $1,400.

To view the ad, click:

for the script and Obama release, click below...

Obama Campaign: Not Paid for by PAC or Federal Lobbyist Money

Campaign Unveils TV Ad, “Not Paid for” Signs in Offices Across Iowa

DES MOINES – U.S. Senator Barack Obama’s (D-IL) campaign today highlighted its commitment to decreasing the influence of Washington lobbyists and political action committees by hanging “Not Paid for by PAC or Federal Lobbyist Money” signs in dozens of offices across the state. The campaign also announced a new TV ad called “Take it Back” that highlights Obama’s record of reform that will begin running statewide on Wednesday.

“I am extremely proud of amount of money our campaign has raised, but I’m even more proud of how we did it,” Obama said. “We didn’t take a dime from Washington lobbyists or special interest group because if we’re going to truly change the way Washington works, we need to break the stranglehold that the lobbyists and special interests have on our democracy.”

In 25 campaign offices across the state this week, community leaders as well as local supporters and donors will talk about why Senator Obama’s record of reform and refusal to accept money from Washington lobbyists or PACs is important to them. Obama has proposed the most far-reaching ethics and lobbying reform plan of any candidate in this race, pledging that no one working in an Obama Administration will be allowed to lobby the White House after they leave.

Iowa Attorney General Tom Miller headlined the campaign event in Des Moines, and said that Obama’s record of fighting for reforms means that he is the candidate most capable of achieving results and truly changing Washington.

“Barack’s efforts to reform our government haven’t always been popular with politicians, but he knows they’re the right thing to do for America,” Attorney General Miller said. “As a State Senator in Illinois, he worked to pass the toughest campaign-finance law in Illinois history that banned the personal use of campaign money by Illinois legislators and banned most gifts from lobbyists. Eight years later when he arrived in Washington, Obama introduced and helped pass in the Senate the strongest ethics reform since Watergate, including a full ban on gifts and meals from lobbyists, an end to subsidized travel for lawmakers on corporate jets and more.”

The campaign also announced that on Wednesday, it will begin running a new ad titled “Take it Back” that highlights Obama’s record and commitment to ethics and lobbying reform.

To view the ad, click:

Script of Take it Back:


Still of Obama.

CG: The Obama Story:

Changing Washington
OBAMA V/O: I’m Barack Obama and I approve this message.

Obama announcement event.
OBAMA SYNC: I know that I haven't spent a lot of time learning the ways of Washington. But, I've been there long enough to know that the ways of Washington must change.

Obama portrait.

Newspaper graphic: Obama is Democrats’ Point Man on Ethics

Chicago Tribune 1-18-06
ANNCR V/O: In the Senate, Barack Obama challenged both parties to pass tough new ethics rules and rein in the power of lobbyists.

Various shots of Obama talking with people.

CG: Refusing contributions from PACs and Washington lobbyists

Chicago Tribune 4-1-07
And he’s leading by example, refusing contributions from PACs and Washington lobbyists who have too much power today.

Cut to Obama announcement event.
OBAMA SYNC: They think they own this government. But we're here today to take it back.

Cut to card.

CG: Obama ’08

Approved by Barack Obama and PAID FOR BY OBAMA FOR AMERICA
Sfx: applause


1 Comment

Over a quarter of a billion spent on presidential campaigns is a clear sign that America is in dire need of campaign finance reform. The problem is the average American doesn't realize this.

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Lynn Sweet

Lynn Sweet is a columnist and the Washington Bureau Chief for the Chicago Sun-Times.

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This page contains a single entry by Lynn Sweet published on July 31, 2007 12:46 PM.

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