So, what's Howell been up to this year? Has he changed his nasty, race-baiting ways? Please, but you jest! Look, let's put it this way: fish gotta swim, birds gotta fly, and Scott Howell's gotta create race-baiting ads for Republican candidates. That's what he does, and he's damn good at it, if you can call evil "good."
Howell's latest outrage? According to Chris Cillizza of the Washington Post, Howell is now responsible for this despicable, race-baiting ad against Harold Ford paid for by the National Republican Senatorial Committee (NRSC). How bad is it? Even Bob Corker, the Republican nominee, has asked that it be taken down. And, according to Cillizza, "The Chattanooga Times Free-Press called the commercial 'a new low in political advertising in a Senate race in this state.'"
The New York Times weighs in with the following thoughts:
Critics asserted that the advertisement was a clear effort to play to racial stereotypes and fears, essentially, playing the race card in an election where Mr. Ford is trying to break a century of history and become the first black senator from the South since Reconstruction.
Hilary Shelton, director of the N.A.A.C.P.'s Washington bureau, said the spot took aim at the sensitivities many Americans still have about interracial dating.
John Geer, a professor at Vanderbilt University and a specialist in political advertising, said that it "is playing to a lot of fears" and "frankly makes the Willie Horton ad look like child's play."
Meanwhile, according to BET, "The NAACP called the ad an obvious attempt to make a sexual innuendo about a Black man and a White woman."
So, there you have it; Scott Howell up to his old tricks again, playing blatantly on racial stereotypes and fears in an attempt to win an election for his Republican client.
So, what does George Allen have to say about all this? I mean, he EMPLOYS Scott Howell, the race baiting disciple of Lee Atwater and Karl Rove, after all. You'd think that George Allen, who claims he has changed on racial issues over the years, would strongly and immediately condemn the latest Scott Howell race-baiting ad, while firing him on the spot. Yet, all we get from Allen HQ is a deafening silence.
Of course, that silence could be partly due to the fact that Allen's handlers are keeping a muzzle on him, not letting him speak in fear of what might come out of his mouth. But surely, Allen must be aware that his #1 ad man, Scott Howell, has just made yet ANOTHER outrageous ad that, at the minimum, plays with anti-Black stereotypes and white fears. Surely, George Allen must have an opinion about this. Perhaps Allen approves, perhaps not. As the saying goes, we can't know what's in George Allen's heart.
But so far, actions speak louder than words, with Scott Howell continuing to make his lying, smearing, anti-Webb ads for George Allen here in Virginia, in addition to his race-baiting ads for Bob Corker against Harold Ford in Tennessee. What gives? Does Goerge Allen approve of this behavior or not? Will he keep Scott Howell and let him spread his lies about Jim Webb?
*An ad claiming that Webb will raise your taxes by $2,000 - A BLATANT LIE
*An ad that claims Webb would bring back the "marriage penalty tax" - ANOTHER BLATANT LIE
*An ad that claims Jim Webb's anti-women - ANOTHER BLATANT LIE
*An ad that claims Jim Webb opposes traditional marriage - ANOTHER BLATANT LIE
*An ad that claims Webb "dissed" Nancy Reagan - ANOTHER BLATANT LIE.
*An ad that claims Webb wan't really praised by Ronald Reagan - ANOTHER BLATANT LIE.
*An ad that...well, we could go on and on but you get the point.
So, when is George Allen going to: a) condemn his ad man Scott Howell's despicable race baiting in Tennessee, b) fire Scott Howell from working on his campaign, and c) take down any ads that spread outright lies about Jim Webb?
I'm not holding my breath, but all of us should be watching Allen's actions today, not 30 years ago, when deciding who to vote for on November 7. Lowell Feld is Netroots Coordinator for the Jim Webb for US Senate Campaign. The ideas expressed here belong to Lowell Feld alone, and do not represent those of Jim Webb, his advisors, staff, or supporters.