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Echoing the Talking Points

Reported by Judy - July 30, 2004 -

If you watched any Fox coverage during the convention, you probably have heard a Republican say that convention speakers were ignoring John Kerry's record in the U.S. Senate, followed by the complaint that he did not pass any legislation. Fox News channel today (July 30) kept the echo going.

Some samples from Fox and Friends. Kilmeade said speeches were more about thirty five years ago than "what have you done lately." (8:04 a.m. EDT). Fox and Friends also quoted a USA Today piece by Walter Shapiro saying little mention was made of his legislative career (8:07 a.m. EDT).

Jon Scott repeated the GOP talking point (9:14 a.m. EDT) in the form of a question to Elaine Kamarck, former adviser to Democrat Al Gore, saying the speeches about Kerry "really glossed over what he has spent the last eighteen years of his life doing." Kamarck said Kerry talked more about matters such as the war in Iraq and the fight against al Qaeda because that is what people are concerned about, not Kerry's career in the Senate.

Kamarck's answer was effective in putting the focus back on Kerry's issue, but at some point Democrats might want to point out that Kerry was in the minority for more than half the time (about 11 of the 20 years) he has been in the Senate. Republicans don't let the Senate bring up and pass bills with Democrats' names on them when the Republicans are in control. Why? So they can run against them and say the Democrat never passed any bills. Democrats do the same. So Kerry really had only a few years to make a legislative mark.