Howard Kurtz of The Washington Post summarizes the last minute ad campaigns for Bush and Kerry and gives us – at the last minute – one of the few clarifications he has bothered to make about the most notorious alleged Kerry flip-flop.
The newest Bush spot, which recycles previous attack lines, is a bit unusual in that it is a negative assault on a positive Kerry ad. “Just when you thought there was a limit on what John Kerry would say, now he claims he’ll always support our military,” the narrator says. “The same Kerry who voted against 87 billion for our troops in combat in the war on terror. Against body armor, bullets and supplies. The same Kerry who after the first attack on the World Trade Center proposed slashing America’s intelligence budget.”
The last-minute ad makes no mention of Iraq, instead referring to the “war on terror.” Kerry has said that he opposed the $87 billion funding bill for Iraq and Afghanistan as a protest against the administration’s Iraq policy, after the failure of his proposal to link the measure to a rollback of Bush’s tax cuts for the richest Americans. Kerry’s 1994 proposal to cut $1 billion in intelligence funding was smaller than those of some GOP lawmakers, including current CIA chief Porter J. Goss.
Needless to say, the two paragraphs above appear in the two penultimate paragraphs in the story. Gee, Howie, now you tell us the rational explanation!