PRESS RELEASE: TOM DELAY, BOB NEY TARGETS OF MAJOR NEW AD CAMPAIGN LINKING BOTH TO MONEY SCANDALS ROILING WASHINGTON
Submitted by David Donnelly on Mon, 01/09/2006 - 18:02
WASHINGTON – Two public interest groups joined forces today to unveil $115,000 in new television, radio and billboard ads targeting Rep. Tom DeLay, R-Texas, and Rep. Bob Ney, R-Ohio, for their central roles in one of the worst congressional corruption scandals ever. The television and radio ads will begin airing Wednesday in Reps. DeLay and Ney’s districts and the billboard looms above Rep. Ney’s hometown exit on Rte. I-70 in Heath, Ohio. The groups, Campaign for America’s Future and Public Campaign Action Fund, announced that the advertising campaign kicks off a yearlong combined effort to educate the public about congressional scandals, to hold corrupt public officials accountable, and to mobilize support for comprehensive solutions to address campaign finance, lobbying and ethics reform in Congress. The joint effort will focus on at least a dozen lawmakers across the country. The television ad asks Rep. DeLay to “resign from Congress” and is scheduled to run throughout the Houston media market on broadcast and cable stations KHOU-CBS, KRIV-FOX, KPRC-NBC, KTRK-ABC, CNN, FOX, CNBC and CNN Headline News. “Tom DeLay. Indicted for criminal money laundering. Pocketed tens of thousands in campaign contributions from indicted lobbyist Jack Abramoff,” says the announcer in the television spot. “Forty-eight trips to golf resorts, 100 flights aboard company jets, 200 nights at world-class resorts and hotels. One million dollars from Russian tycoons to allegedly influence his vote.” The radio spot asks Rep. Ney to “come clean” with the bribery investigation that connects him to disgraced lobbyist Jack Abramoff and is set to run throughout his southeastern Ohio district on WWVA-AM, WHBC-FM, WKOV-FM, WHTH-AM and WNKO-FM. “A lavish trip to Scotland to play golf on world-famous courses. Free tickets to sporting events. Meals at upscale restaurants. Tens of thousands of dollars. Sounds like a game show jackpot, doesn’t it?” says the radio spot. “Unfortunately, it’s what Ohio Congressman Bob Ney got from convicted lobbyist Jack Abramoff in exchange for political favors.” The billboard is above the east bound lanes of Rte. I-70 at exit 126, one mile west of State Rte. 37 in Heath, Ohio where Rep. Ney lives and simply says, “Rep. Bob Ney. Under Investigation for Taking Bribes.” David Donnelly, the national campaign director of Public Campaign Action Fund, will run day-to-day operations of the joint campaign. Donnelly said the campaign is designed to push bold reforms to clean up the most corrupt Congress ever. “There should be no place in Congress for the corrupt pay-to-play politics of Tom DeLay and Bob Ney,” said Donnelly. “These politicians will be held accountable and Congress should enact a comprehensive and serious set of political reforms, which must include draining the money swamp of Washington by passing public financing of elections.” Campaign for America’s Future co-director Roger Hickey said the yearlong campaign is designed to fight for the priorities of the American people against the special interests. The American people are paying the price for giving special interests access to Congress, with higher prescription drug prices and higher gas and home heating costs. “Americans know the Republican Congress has been making life worse for families on everything from health care to energy policy, retirement insecurity to jobs. Now they understand that the money machine Tom DeLay and Bob Ney have built is designed to make sure that the GOP majority will only respond to wealthy lobbyists, big donors and well-connected corporations,” said Hickey. “These scandals in Washington shine a light on members of Congress and lobbyists they’re willing to sell the public interest for private gain. Enough is enough.” Campaign for America’s Future is a national public interest group that brings together coalitions around “kitchen table” issues to make the economy work for working people again. The group played a leading role in rallying opposition to the president’s plan to privatize Social Security and the organization’s Apollo Alliance for Jobs and Energy has outlined a 10-step national agenda to create energy independence by the year 2015 and represents a coalition of national security, labor, environmental, civil rights and business leaders. Public Campaign Action Fund is a national nonprofit watchdog organization that works to hold politicians accountable for special favors they give to wealthy donors, and supports comprehensive political reform to level the playing field and put power in the hands of the people.