Senator John Kerry (D-Mass)
Photo by Luke
Editor's Note: Fog City Journal received the following letter
from Senator John Kerry on behalf of the Obama for America campaign.
January 22, 2008
I support Barack Obama because he doesn't seek to perfect the
politics of Swiftboating -- he seeks to end it.
This is personal for me, and for a whole lot of Americans who
lived through the 2004 election.
As a veteran, it disgusts me that the Swift Boats we loved while
we were in uniform on the Mekong Delta have been rendered, in
Karl Rove's twisted politics, an ugly verb meaning to lie about
someone's character just to win an election. But as someone who
cares about winning this election and changing the country I love,
I know it's not enough to complain about a past we can't change
when our challenge is to win the future -- which is why we must
stop the Swiftboating, stop the push-polling, stop the front groups,
and stop the email chain smears.
The truth matters, but how you fight the lies matters even more.
We must be determined never again to lose any election to a lie.
This year, the attacks are already starting. Some of you may
have heard about the disgusting lies about Barack Obama that are
being circulated by email. These attacks smear Barack's Christian
faith and deep patriotism, and they distort his record of more
than two decades of public service. They are nothing short of
"Swiftboat" style anonymous attacks.
These are the same tactics the right has used again and again,
and as we've learned, these attacks, no matter how bogus, can
spread and take root if they go unchecked.
But not this time -- we're fighting back.
And when I say "we," I mean that literally. I know
Barack is committed to fighting every smear every time. He'll
fight hard and stand up for the truth. But he can't do it alone.
We need you to email the truth to your address books. Print it
out and post it at work. Talk to your neighbors. Call your local
radio station. Write a letter to the editor. If lies can be spread
virally, let's prove to the cynics that the truth can be every
bit as persuasive as it is powerful.
The Obama campaign has created a place where you can find the
truth you'll need to push back on these smears and a way to spread
the truth to all of your address book.
Take action here:
So when your inbox fills up with trash and the emails of smear
and fear, find the facts, and help defeat the lies.
Barack Obama is committed to bringing our country together to
meet the challenges we face, but he knows that power gives up
nothing without a struggle -- and to win the chance to change
America, we must first defeat the hateful tactics that have been
used to tear us apart for too long.
With your help, we can turn the page on an era of small, divisive
politics -- but only if next time you hear these attacks on Barack,
you take action immediately:
The fight is just heating up -- we won't let them steal this
election with lies and distortions.