MOVEON.ORG BACKGROUNDER

 

2005

 

 

MoveOn.Org’s Functions/Mission:

 

“The MoveOn Family Of Organizations Consists Of Three Entities.” “MoveOn.org, a 501(c)(4) organization, primarily focuses on education and advocacy on important national issues. MoveOn PAC, a federal PAC, primarily helps members elect candidates who reflect our values. And MoveOn.org Voter Fund, a 527 organization, primarily educates voters on the positions, records, views, and qualifications of candidates for public office.” (MoveOn.Org Website, www.moveon.org, Accessed 3/18/05)

 

·        MoveOn is working to bring ordinary people back into politics.  With a system that today revolves around big money and big media, most citizens are left out.  When it becomes clear that our ‘representatives’ don’t represent the public, the foundations of democracy are in peril.  MoveOn is a catalyst for a new kind of grassroots involvement, supporting busy but concerned citizens in finding their political voice.  Our nationwide network of more than 600,000 online activists is one of the most effective and responsive outlets for democratic participation available today.  When there is a disconnect between broad public opinion and legislative action, MoveOn builds electronic advocacy groups.  Examples of such issues are campaign finance, environmental and energy issues, impeachment, gun safety, and nuclear disarmament.  Once a group is assembled, MoveOn provides information and tools to help each individual have the greatest possible impact.  During impeachment, MoveOn’s grassroots advocates generated more than 250,000 phone calls and a million emails to Congress.  We helped Congress come to understand the depth of public opposition to impeachment.”   (MoveOn.Org Website, www.moveon.org, Accessed 3/18/03)

 

MoveOn.Org And National Democrats

 

MoveOn Email Claims It Bought And Owns Democrat Party: “Now It’s Our Party: We Bought It, We Own It, And We’re Going To Take It Back.” (Adam C. Smith, “Unshaven, Unbowed And In Our Face,” St. Petersburg Times, 2/18/05)

 

“[M]oveOn.org, The Pro-Kerry Advocacy Group That Spent $21-Million On The 2004 Election …” (Eric Deggans, “The Party Poopers,” St. Petersburg Times, 1/16/05)

 

MoveOn And Other Grass-Roots Contributors “Gave More Than $300-Million To The Kerry Campaign And The DNC.” “Having helped revolutionize online organizing and fundraising, MoveOn isn’t about to let the Democratic Party forget it. The organization and its legions of Internet-savvy activists are determined to have their say, as have labor unions, trial lawyers and other longtime Democratic fundraisers. ‘In the last year, grass-roots contributors like us gave more than $300-million to the Kerry campaign and the DNC, and proved that the Party doesn’t need corporate cash to be competitive,’ MoveOn’s 24-year-old executive director said in a recent e-mail urging members to back an outsider for chairman of the Democratic National Committee.” (Adam C. Smith, “Unshaven, Unbowed And In Our Face,” St. Petersburg Times, 2/18/05)

 

Senator Robert Byrd Was The Star Of A MoveOn.org Rally Featuring Several Members Of The Senate Democrat Leadership. “The MoveOn.org rally featured several members of the Democratic leadership and one major liberal icon, Sen. Edward Kennedy (D-Mass.). But it was Byrd who drew the most applause. At times during his colleagues’ speeches, the 87-year-old himself could be heard yelling ‘yeah,’ ‘hallelujah,’ and ‘right’ to show support for their stated goal of preventing the change in the filibuster rule.” (Mark Preston, “Feisty Byrd Looks Like A Candidate,” Roll Call, 3/17/05)

 

Senator Edward Kennedy Urged MoveOn.org Activists To Flood Into West Virginia To Help Get Robert Byrd Reelected. “I say we’re gonna see, we want to re-elect Bob Byrd to the United States Senate. . . . I want all of you right here to go down to Mingo County to Bluefield to Jefferson County to help him get reelected.” (Senator Edward Kennedy, MoveOn.org PAC Rally, Washington, DC, 3/16/05)

 

Over $800,000 Was Raised For Byrd Through A MoveOn.org Fundraising E-Mail Featuring A Plea For Support By Liberal Senator Barack Obama. “19,401 contributors had donated $822,914 to Sen. Robert C. Byrd’s 2006 re-election campaign. That’s an average of $42.42 per donation. All the money was raised in two days since Sen. Barack Obama, D-Ill., sent out a fund-raising letter early Tuesday afternoon over the Internet through Moveon.org. . . . Eli Pariser, who coordinates fund-raising for Move On, said, ‘We came to highlight Sen. Byrd because we wanted to demonstrate how much people in West Virginia and all over the country support him.’” (Paul J. Nyden, “Donations For Byrd Come To $823,000,” Charleston Gazette, 4/1/05)

 

Democrat Senate Leader Harry Reid (D-NV) Told A MoveOn Rally That His Caucus Is Depending On MoveOn Activists. “We are depending on you, we are depending on you to make sure this country stands for what we learned many years ago when Mr. Smith went to Washington.” (Senator Harry Reid, MoveOn.org PAC Rally, Washington, DC, 3/16/05)

 

Assistant Democrat Leader Richard Durbin (D-IL) At A MoveOn.org PAC Rally: “MoveOn.org And Everybody Gathered Here Today, You’re Changing America For The Better.” (Senator Richard Durbin, MoveOn.org PAC Rally, Washington, DC, 3/16/05)

 

Durbin To MoveOn: “Keep It Up. MoveOn America. Right On MoveOn.” (Senator Richard Durbin, MoveOn.org PAC Rally, Washington, DC, 3/16/05)

 

MoveOn’s PAC “Rewarded” Senators Boxer And Reid For Challenging Ohio’s Presidential Vote. “MoveOn’s PAC rewarded Boxer and Senate Minority Leader Harry Reid (D-Nev.) for the challenge to Ohio’s presidential vote by posting an online petition to thank them and by giving the legislators the names of about 100,000 signers -- a potentially valuable fundraising list.” (Ronald Brownstein, “Democrats Aren’t Giving Bush a Break This Term,” Los Angeles Times, 2/11/05)

 

Ben Branzel, Founder And Project Director Of MoveOn Student Action, On Senate Democrats: “We Know That We Have Champions And Allies. Senator Reid And Senator Byrd Are Two Perfect Examples Of Those …” (Ben Branzel, MoveOn.org PAC Rally, Washington, DC, 3/16/05)

 

MoveOn Wants “To Be In A Position To Give A Backbone To The Democratic Party.” “‘We want to be in a position to give a backbone to the Democratic Party,’ said Eli Pariser, the executive director of the MoveOn political action committee, which says it has 3 million members.” (Ronald Brownstein, “Democrats Aren’t Giving Bush a Break This Term,” Los Angeles Times, 2/11/05)

 

MoveOn.org’s Washington Director, Tom Matzzie, Noted That Senior Democrat Senators “Eagerly Rearrange Their Schedules To Meet With MoveOn.” “Tom Matzzie describes himself as a pacifist techno geek. Maybe so, but MoveOn.org’s man in Washington sounds like one cocky computer nerd. Between bites of sushi, Matzzie noted how senior Democratic senators eagerly rearrange their schedules to meet with MoveOn.” (Adam C. Smith, “Unshaven, Unbowed And In Our Face,” St. Petersburg Times, 2/18/05)

 

Matzzie: “The Candidates Want Nothing To Do With The DLC [Democratic Leadership Council], It’s So Out Of Vogue.” (Adam C. Smith, “Unshaven, Unbowed And In Our Face,” St. Petersburg Times, 2/18/05)

 

Matzzie: “If The DLC Disappeared From The Democratic Party Tomorrow, No One Would Notice. If MoveOn Weren’t Part Of The Party, People Would Notice And Care.” (Adam C. Smith, “Unshaven, Unbowed And In Our Face,” St. Petersburg Times, 2/18/05)

 

A Senior Kerry-Edwards Campaign Adviser Said MoveOn Was Expanding “Possibly At The Expense Of The Democratic Party.” “‘MoveOn’s building up their own brand and they’re building (its) own fund-raising base - possibly at the expense of the Democratic Party,’ said Marcus Jadotte, a senior Kerry-Edwards campaign adviser. ‘Their involvement with the 2004 election was more focused on building affinity with activist Democrats than defeating George Bush. They didn’t speak to the middle. They didn’t focus on enhancing the base, they focused on riling up the base.’” (Adam C. Smith, “Unshaven, Unbowed And In Our Face,” St. Petersburg Times, 2/18/05)

 

Peter Beinart, The Editor Of The New Republic, Urged Democrats To Take Back Their Party From “Soft” Antiwar Groups Like MoveOn.Org. “While this argument has been smoldering, Peter Beinart, editor of the New Republic, opened another front in the party’s ideological conflict. His cover piece in the Dec. 13 issue urged Democrats to strike a much more hawkish stance in the war against terrorism. Most provocatively, Beinart urged Democrats to ‘take back their movement’ from antiwar elements in the party that he called ‘softs,’ a group that included filmmaker Michael Moore and MoveOn.org, the giant online liberal advocacy group that led opposition to the Iraq war.” (Ronald Brownstein, “Democrats Split Again Over Party’s Agenda,” The Los Angles Times, 1/2/05)

 

The Democratic Leadership Council Applauded Peter Beinart’s Call To Take Back The Party. “Beinart’s cri de coeur drew applause from the Democratic Leadership Council, which raised similar arguments in the December issue of its Blueprint magazine.” (Ronald Brownstein, “Democrats Split Again Over Party’s Agenda,” The Los Angles Times, 1/2/05)

 

MoveOn.org Is Michael Moore’s Army. “Michael Moore has a war plan to defeat President Bush. With MoveOn.org, he now has his army. Speaking to an estimated 55,000 liberal activists by conference call Monday night, packed into 4,600 homes nationwide, Moore asked three things of his devoted listeners.” (David Paul Kuhn, “Michael Moore’s Army On The Move,” CBSNews.com, 6/29/04)

 

MoveOn.org Promoted Michael Moore’s Anti-President Bush Movie, Fahrenheit 9/11. “On a Monday night in late June, just after Fahrenheit 9/11’s record-setting opening weekend, the liberal group MoveOn.org hosted more than 4,000 house parties across the country, at which some 55,000 people showed up to listen to a live webcast featuring Moore. It was the biggest such event in MoveOn’s six-year history, according to MoveOn PAC Field Director Adam Ruben.” (Jason Zengerle, “Crashing The Party,” The New Republic, 7/19/04)

 

Organizations Linked To Hezbollah Offered To Help Distribute Michael Moore’s Film In The Middle East. “Meanwhile, in the United Arab Emirates, the film is being offered the kind of support it doesn’t need. According to Screen International, the UAE-based distributor Front Row Entertainment has been contacted by organizations related to the Hezbollah in Lebanon with offers of help.” (Samantha Ellis, “Fahrenheit 9/11 Gets Help Offer From Hezbollah,” The [London] Guardian, 6/17/04)

 

MOVEON AT ODDS WITH DEMOCRAT PARTY

 

MoveOn.Org’s Washington Director Tom Matzzie:  “The Candidates Want Nothing To Do With The DLC, It’s So Out Of Vogue.”  (Adam C. Smith, “Unshaven, Unbowed And In Our Face,” St. Petersburg Times, 2/18/05)

 

 

DLC CEO Al From:  “You’ve Got To Reject Michael Moore And The MoveOn Crowd.”  (NBC’s “First Read,” 3/1/05)

 

Democrat 527 Operative Harold Ickes: “When You Go Out And Talk To Them, People Are Much More Interested In Something Like MoveOn.org Than In The Democratic Party … It Has Cachet. There Is No Cachet In The Democratic Party.” (Matt Bai, “Wiring The Vast Left-Wing Conspiracy,” The New York Times, 7/25/04)

 

“Rank-And-File Democrats ‘Are More Like Us Than MoveOn,’ Which [Al] From Called A Group Of ‘Elites, People Who Sit In Their Basements All The Time And Play On Their Computers.’”  (NBC’s “First Read,” 3/1/05) 

 

MOVEON.ORG ADS AND BACKGROUND

 

In October, MoveOn.org Ran Ads In New York And Washington, DC, Attacking President Bush’s $87 Billion Request.  JUDY WOODRUFF: “The anti-war group MoveOn.org is launching ads today blasting the president’s $87 billion funding request.  The spots are scheduled to air for three days on cable networks here in New York and in Washington. 

 

NARRATOR: “We could have built 10,000 new schools, or hired almost 2 million new teachers.  We could have rebuilt our electric grid.”

 

WOODRUFF: “MoveOn.org says it hopes to raise $10 million to run ads accusing Mr. Bush of being a misleader in presidential swing states through this March.”  (CNN’s “Inside Politics,” 10/15/03)

 

MoveOn.org Partnered With The DNC To Raise Funds For Ads Attacking Republicans In Texas.  In Texas, Democrats are fighting back hard, but with the world focused on California, they’ve been fighting alone.  They need our help, and the Democratic National Committee and MoveOn.org PAC are partnering to offer these brave Democrats support.  A partisan plan pushed by Karl Rove and Tom DeLay in the Texas legislature will redistrict between five and seven Democrats out of Congress, putting the U.S. House of Representatives more firmly in Republican control. … A letter below from State Senator Rodney Ellis explains the situation.  Please read it, and then please help us launch a hard-hitting ad campaign to fight back in Texas.  Whether you donate $5 or $5,000, you will help hold accountable reckless Republicans who think they can get away with anything.  Please contribute to this effort now.”  (DNC Email, “Emergency: Democracy Under Attack In Texas,” 8/21/03)

 

MoveOn.org Founders Wes Boyd And Joan Blades Made Over $25 Million When They Sold The Software Firm They Founded, Berkeley Systems.  But the creators of MoveOn.org, an Internet fund-raising and lobbying group, have built themselves a more respectable constituency than anyone anticipated when Berkeley-based software developers Wes Boyd and Joan Blades first conceived of it four years ago. … Wes Boyd and Joan Blades have the time and resources to change the world thanks to flying toasters.  As creators of the software firm Berkeley Systems, they made a fortune on the famous After Dark screen-saver, eventually selling the company to the Internet giant CUC International for $25 million.”  (Chris Thompson, “The Rise Of Point & Click Liberalism,” East Bay Express [San Francisco, CA], 7/2/03)

 

MoveOn.org Held An Online Democrat Primary In June 2003.  “Last month, members of MoveOn.org, an organization of 1.4 million liberal activists, held the country’s first online primary to pick a Democrat to challenge President Bush.  And the winner was?  Nobody.  A candidate needed 50 percent of the vote to get the group’s endorsement.  The first-place finisher was former Vermont Gov. Howard Dean with 44 percent, followed by Rep. Dennis Kucinich of Ohio with 24 percent, and Sen. John Kerry of Massachusetts with 16 percent.  None of the other six candidates reached double digits.”  (William Schneider, “Connecting With The Wired Left,” The National Journal, 7/5/03)

 

MoveOn.org’s Primary Helped To Raise An Estimated $1.75 Million For The Democrat Presidential Candidates.  MoveOn is a way for liberals to raise money fast, over the Internet.  That’s the main reason candidates showed so much interest.  Some 317,639 people voted in the MoveOn primary.  Nearly 50,000 of them pledged contributions, raising an estimated total of $1.75 million for the Democratic contenders.”  (William Schneider, “Connecting With The Wired Left,” The National Journal, 7/5/03) 

 

MoveOn.org Officials Reportedly Believe Their Organization Can Raise $50 Million For The 2004 Election.  “According to a June 11 email sent out by Boyd, if the group’s 2 million members coalesce around a candidate, MoveOn.org will ‘endorse and immediately begin doing work to elect that candidate.’  That could provide the lucky candidate with a major advantage both during and after the primary:  Political insiders tell Who’s Who that MoveOn.org thinks it can raise as much as $50 million for the 2004 election, nearly as much as Al Gore’s fundraising total in 2000.  Howard Dean’s insurgent campaign is taking note, and has already launched an effort to win the group’s endorsement.”  (Washington Monthly, 7/1/03)

 

The Dean Campaign Paid Zack Exley, A MoveOn.org Employee, To Work On Their Website.  “[O]ne of MoveOn.org’s employees, Zack Exley, recently took a leave of absence for two weeks and two days when he was paid to work on organizing Dean’s Web site.”  (Nedra Pickler, “Virtual Primary Faces Vote-Rig Concerns,” The Associated Press, 6/22/03)

 

Exley Also Created GWBush.com In 2000, Which Featured A “Doctored Photo Of George W. Bush With What Appeared To Be Cocaine On His Upper Lip And Nose.”  As the 2000 presidential campaign began, a young computer programmer from Massachusetts named Zack Exley enjoyed 15 minutes of fame when he created a website called GWBush.com.  The site, which Exley billed as a ‘parody,’ featured a doctored photo of George W. Bush with what appeared to be cocaine on his upper lip and nose.  It sold bumper stickers with sayings like ‘GWBush, Not a Crackhead Anymore!’ and ‘GWBush, Born with a Silver Spoon Up His Nose.’  And it featured a cartoon of Bush dancing with a bottle in his hand as kegs of beer bounced around the screen and ‘Louie, Louie’ played in the background. … These days, however, GWBush.com is still in business.  Visitors can still watch the beer cartoon and buy bumper stickers that say, ‘Some people are just too stupid to be president.’  Given all that has happened since the 2000 campaign, none of that might seem to merit serious discussion, except that in recent months Zack Exley has emerged as a serious player in Democratic politics.  The creator of GWBush.com is now the organizing director for MoveOn.org, the web-based activist group that attracted worldwide attention in June when it held a ‘virtual primary’ of Democratic presidential candidates.”  (Byron York, “HateBush.org: The Rise Of A Website, A Political Action Committee … A Movement?,” National Review, 7/28/03)

 

MoveOn.org Raised $1 Million For Ads Attacking Texas Republicans On Redistricting.  “The 11 Democrats who fled Texas to block congressional redistricting are getting a boost from an online Internet group that helped Howard Dean raise unprecedented sums for his presidential bid.  The Web-based group - MoveOn.org - has launched a fund-raising appeal with a $1 million goal to produce television and radio ads denouncing the Republican remap effort.  ‘A ‘defending democracy campaign’ is what we’re calling it,’ said Zack Exley, organizing director for MoveOn.  ‘We want to raise awareness nationally to put the spotlight on what’s going on in Texas.’  According Mr. Exley, an e-mail solicitation to ‘help us launch a hard-hitting ad campaign to fight back in Texas’ has raised $430,000 so far.  He said a second fund-raising appeal has been sent to potential donors.”  (Wayne Slater and Gromer Jeffers, Jr., “Web Group Comes To Exiles’ Aid,” The Dallas Morning News, 8/22/03)

 

MoveOn.org And Win Without War Joined To Air Television Ads Labeling Bush A “Misleader” And Questioning The President’s Credibility.  “Still, Win Without War and MoveOn.org are already calling a 30-second ad they co-sponsored, which aired over the past week in the Washington and New York area cable markets, an unqualified hit.  The ad, which labels Bush a ‘misleader,’ brought in thousands of people to the MoveOn.org Web site to sign the petition.  The coalition said it will place ads in at least 10 other cities over the next two weeks.”  (Evelyn Nieves, “Antiwar Groups Say Public Ire Over Iraq Claims Is Increasing,” The Washington Post, 7/22/03)

 

MoveOn.org Funded A Controversial Campaign Against Bush Tax Cuts, Depicting Parents Having To Give Blood To Raise Money For Their Children’s Education. “The liberal activist group MoveOn.org is running a caustic television ad campaign in 20 cities that depicts the administration’s plan as too expensive and a sop to the wealthy. The ads, which began running earlier this week, feature parents selling their blood plasma to raise money for their children’s cash-strapped school -- a reenactment of a fundraiser last month for a school in Oregon.” (Helen Dewar, “2nd Illinois Republican Declines Senate Bid,” The Washington Post, 5/14/03)

 

The Commercials Were Linked To A “Virtual March” In Which The DNC And Other Liberal Groups Participated In Hopes Of Halting Washington. “The $100,000 campaign, which has been rejected by cable providers in two cities -- they considered the spots too controversial -- will coincide with a ‘virtual march’ on Washington, scheduled for [Wednesday, May 14]. MoveOn.org, along with the Democratic National Committee, the Leadership Conference on Civil Rights and other liberal groups, plans to flood the Senate’s phone lines with calls and faxes condemning the president’s plan.” (Helen Dewar, “2nd Illinois Republican Declines Senate Bid,” The Washington Post, 5/14/03)

 

MoveOn.org’s Controversial Commercial Was Pulled In Some Cities Due To Cable Companies’ Script Objects. “A television commercial opposing tax cuts sought by President Bush won’ be seen on Cox cable in Phoenix because it is either ‘in poor taste’ or is ‘too controversial’ . . . In Phoenix, Cox spokeswoman Andrea Katsenes said the ad was turned down because it was ‘in poor taste.’ She would not elaborate on what the company found wrong.” (Jon Kamman, “COX Rejects Anti-Tax Cut Ad, Citing Controversy,” The Arizona Republic, 5/13/03)

 

MoveOn.org’s Exley Said That The Group’s Members Contributed Over $4 Million To Congressional Candidates In The 2002 Elections.  (Julia Malone, “Democrats Compete For Party’s Liberal Base In Online ‘Primary,’” The Philadelphia Inquirer, 6/24/03)

 

In The Past Two Federal Election Cycles, MoveOn.org’s PAC Has Contributed $236,974 With All Donations Going To Federal Democrat Candidates.  (The Center For Responsive Politics, www.opensecrets.org, Accessed March 18, 2003)

 

MoveOn.org’s Anti-War Message Has Been Forwarded By Their Creation Of A Celebrity Anti-War Group Of Musicians.  “Musicians United to Win Without War … recently placed full-page anti-war ads in The New York Times and Rolling Stone. … More than 40 acts that support the organization, including Sheryl Crow, David Byrne, Jay-Z, Dave Matthews, R.E.M., Massive Attack, Fugazi, Kronos Quartet, Missy Elliott, Lucinda Williams, Ryuichi Sakamoto, OutKast, and Lou Reed. A concert to support the cause is reportedly being discussed, but the organization’s reps say that nothing has been finalized yet.  Musicians United to Win Without War is funded by nonprofit activist organization MoveOn.org, which has created a Web site for the cause. MoveOn.org executive director Peter Schuerman says, ‘While MoveOn.org strives to [get] regular people’s voices heard, music stars have the ability to be heard much more quickly. The support of so many amazing musicians has given a tremendous lift to the anti-war cause.’ Although the organization has no concrete, immediate plans for anti-war events, Schuerman adds, ‘We’re always considering our options.’”  (Jim Bessman, “Anti-War Support,” Billboard, March 22, 2003)

 

600,000 People Have Allegedly Joined MoveOn.org’s Anti-War Movement.  “More than 600,000 people and counting have joined the anti-war movement online at MoveOn.org, which has run television ads in major markets and met with members of Congress in an effort to drum up opposition to war.”  (Stacia Falat, “Anti-War Update,” In These Times, March 17, 2003)

 

In 1999, MoveOn.org Raised Money To Defeat Incumbents Who Voted For The Impeachment Of Clinton.  “Moving from advocacy to electoral action, the MoveOn.org ‘We will remember’ campaign is raising funds for candidates challenging incumbents who supported impeachment. Five candidates from across the nation were highlighted in this first offering: Adam Schiff running against impeachment House manager Rogan in California, Gov. Mel Carnahan running against Sen. Ashcroft in Missouri, Rep. Rush Holt defending his recently won seat in New Jersey, Nancy Keenan running against Rep. Hill in Montana, and Jean Elliott Brown running against Rep. Foley in Florida. As races become more clear and the election season heats up, MoveOn will offer more candidates for consideration by contributors.”  (MoveOn.org, Press Release, June 30, 1999)

 

Hollywood Connection

 

Many Hollywood Democrats “Gravitated Toward Involvement In MoveOn.” “[D]emocrats dominate in Hollywood, and many have gravitated toward involvement in MoveOn, which started as an online rump group opposing President Clinton’s impeachment and later, the Iraq war. An independent group not connected directly to the Kerry campaign, MoveOn has raised millions through the Internet, promising an unconventional approach to campaigning.” (Beth Fouhy, “Celebrities Take Center Stage On Both Coasts This Week For John Kerry,” The Associated Press, 8/23/04)

 

MoveOn.org Used A-List Actors And Directors In Many Of Their Anti-Bush Ads. “In the latest manifestation of celebrity support for John Kerry, the political Internet group MoveOn.org on Tuesday will unveil 10 new anti-Bush ads, directed by award-winning directors and starring such Hollywood A-listers like actors Matt Damon and Scarlett Johanssen.” (Beth Fouhy, “Celebrities Take Center Stage On Both Coasts This Week For John Kerry,” The Associated Press, 8/23/04)

“[T]he Liberal Group Moveon.Org Produced A TV Ad Titled ‘Quagmire’ Asserting That Mr. Bush Lacks Plans To End The War. ‘George Bush Got Us Into This Quagmire,’ The Narrator Says As An American Soldier Sinks Deeper Into Quicksand, Rifle Overhead In A Posture That Suggests Surrender.”  (Todd J. Gillman, “History Of A ‘Quagmire’” The Dallas Morning News, 9/27/04)

 

MOVEON.ORG VOTER FUND 527 COMMITTEE

 

MoveOn.Org Voter Fund Established On September 18, 2003 And Raised $12,558,215 In 2004 Cycle.  (IRS 527 Committee Search Website, www.irs.gov, Accessed 9/30/03; Political Money Line Website, www.tray.com, Accessed 3/18/05)

 

MoveOn.Org Created The MoveOn.org Voter Fund, A Soft Money 527 Committee That Will “Create And Run Powerful Political Ads In Swing States To Challenge President Bush’s Policies And His Administration.”  “The MoveOn.org Voter Fund is a new 527 fund affiliated with MoveOn.org, the pre-eminent online advocacy group in the United States.  The Voter Fund will create and run powerful political ads in swing states to challenge President Bush’s policies and his administration.  The Voter Fund will also house other projects which will expose the gap between President Bush’s carefully constructed image and his failed policies.”  (MoveOn.org Voter Fund Website, www.MoveOnvoterfund.org, Accessed 10/24/03)

 

MoveOn.Org Voter Fund Aims To “Reduce His [Bush’s] Support Among Swing Voters Through An Empirically Driven Advertising Campaign.”  “Our objective is to challenge George Bush’s policies and record in order to reduce support for his re-election in 2004.  We will concentrate our resources in several states critical to his re-election.  In those states, we will reduce his support among swing voters through an empirically driven advertising campaign.”  (MoveOn.org Voter Fund Website, www.MoveOnvoterfund.org, Accessed 10/24/03)

 

MoveOn.Org Voter Fund Believes That “A Strong Independent Effort That Is Launched Immediately Can Fill The Void And Soften Bush’s Support Before He And His Eventual Opponent Begin Their Head-To-Head Battle In The Spring Of 2004.”  “Bush’s support is eroding on many fronts, foreign and domestic.  Yet his potential presidential opponents must spend most of their resources on competing with each other rather than further undermining public support for Bush.  As this will continue until mid- to late-March, we believe a strong independent effort that is launched immediately can fill the void and soften Bush’s support before he and his eventual opponent begin their head-to-head battle in the spring of 2004.  Absent such work, Bush’s use of the presidential bully pulpit will put all of us at a disadvantage in the period leading up to March 2004.”  (MoveOn.org Voter Fund Website Strategy Memo, www.MoveOnvoterfund.org/strategy.html, Accessed 10/24/03) 

 

MoveOn.Org Voter Fund Will “Produce Convincing Anti-Bush TV Spots And Get Them On The Air In Targeted States” Throughout The “Pre-Primary And Primary Periods.”  “We will create powerful television advertising to implement this strategy.  We will produce convincing anti-Bush TV spots and get them on the air in targeted states.  We will buy enough airtime to effectively deliver our message to swing voters in those states.  We will sustain our advertising presence continually throughout the pre-primary and primary periods.  Our advertising will significantly enhance door-to-door canvassing, labor union membership education, voter registration, and other projects taking place on the ground in the states we target.  We will constantly refine our themes and the content and tone of our TV spots to reflect the findings of a vigorous testing program.”  (MoveOn.org Voter Fund Website Strategy Memo, www.MoveOnvoterfund.org/strategy.html, Accessed 10/24/03) 

 

MoveOn.Org Voter Fund’s Initial TV Ads “Grouped Around Three Simple Themes.”  “Our initial TV advertising will be grouped around three simple themes, which recent polling and focus group research have indicated will get the best response. First, Bush’s actions can’t be trusted. … Second, Bush’s actions reflect a lack of concern for working families. … Third, Bush’s actions and record show lack of competence to solve the nation’s problems.”  (MoveOn.org Voter Fund Website Strategy Memo, www.MoveOnvoterfund.org/strategy.html, Accessed 10/24/03) 

 

MoveOn.Org Voter Fund Tested And Re-Evaluated Its Message Through Polls And Focus Groups, Responding To “Varying Conditions In Each State.”  “We will continually test and re-evaluate this three-pronged message strategy by conducting polls and focus groups and by staying in touch with allies working on the ground in each of our targeted states.  We will refine our understanding of the swing voter population in each state to see which segments are more persuadable than others.  We will be sensitive to varying conditions in each state, which may require that different TV spots be run in different locations.  We will test the impact of our advertising with before and after polling to be certain we are having the effect we desire.  We will test different amounts of advertising to be certain we are buying enough to affect the vote but not more than is necessary.  We will constantly troll for new messages that might more effectively achieve our objective, and we will monitor our tone to be sure it resonates with the voters we are after.”  (MoveOn.org Voter Fund Website Strategy Memo, www.MoveOnvoterfund.org/strategy.html, Accessed 10/24/03) 

 

MoveOn.Org Voter Fund Planned To Coordinate With Liberal Allies Running “Field Campaigns” In The States.  “We will work collaboratively with other projects pursuing similar strategies.  While ours will be the only campaign using large-scale TV advertising during the pre-primary and primary periods, several other well-funded field efforts are underway in some or all of the states we are targeting.  We will coordinate with these efforts to ensure that our advertising will enhance public interest in these field campaigns, increase motivation to participate in them, and get them more attention from the local press.”  (MoveOn.org Voter Fund Website Strategy Memo, www.MoveOnvoterfund.org/strategy.html, Accessed 10/24/03)

 

MoveOn.Org Voter Fund Believed That The “Outcome Of The Next Presidential Election Will Be Largely Decided In A Few States And Determined By Relatively Small Margins.”  “We understand that an autumn 2003/winter 2004 campaign is very early for affecting the vote in November 2004.  However, we believe that the outcome of the next presidential election will be largely decided in a few states and determined by relatively small margins.  We should never allow there to be a gap in the drumbeat of opposition the public hears about Bush’s performance as President, especially in the battleground states, and especially now that his support has dropped to pre-9/11 levels.”  (MoveOn.org Voter Fund Website Strategy Memo, www.MoveOnvoterfund.org/strategy.html, Accessed 10/24/03)

 

Top Donors To MoveOn.Org Voter Fund Were Herbert And Marion Sandler ($2,505,014), Peter B. Lewis ($2,500,000), George Soros ($2,500,000) and Stephen Bing ($971,427). (Political Money Line Website, www.tray.com, Accessed 3/18/05)

o        Lewis Was Second Largest Donor To Democrat-527 Groups In 2004 Cycle, Giving $23,997,220, Including To Joint Victory Campaign 2004, ACT NOW PAC, America Votes 2004 And Democracy For America. (Political Money Line Website, www.tray.com, Accessed 3/18/05)

o        Soros Contributed The Most Money,  $27,030,105, Of Any Donor To 527s In 2004 Cycle, Including To Joint Victory Campaign 2004, ACT NOW PAC, And Democracy For America. (Political Money Line Website, www.tray.com, Accessed 3/18/05)

 

 

o        Bing Was Fourth Largest Contributor, Giving $13,952,682, To Democrat-527s In 2004 Cycle, Including To Joint Victory Campaign 2004, Voices For Working Families, And Campaign for Americas Future. (Political Money Line Website, www.tray.com, Accessed 3/18/05)

 

MoveOn.Org PAC Raised $31,870,607 In 2004 Cycle. (Political Money Line Website, www.tray.com, Accessed 3/18/05)

 

 

 

MOVEON.ORG – LIBERAL ANTI-WAR GROUP

 

MoveOn.org Opposed Military Action In Afghanistan After 9/11

 

After 9/11, MoveOn.org Collected Signatures For Statement Calling For “Justice, Not Escalating Violence That Would Only Play Into The Terrorists’ Hands.”  “Joan Blades of Berkeley, a founder of MoveOn.org, an online network of liberal-leaning activists, said her group had collected 30,000 signatures since the attacks Sept. 11 on a statement calling for ‘justice, not escalating violence that would only play into the terrorists’ hands.’  ‘It’s a frightening thing to find out there are nations of people that think we’re evil,’ Blades said in a telephone interview.  ‘We don’t want to support that imagery; we want to turn it around.’”  (Tony Pugh, “Against Tide, They Clamor For Peace,” The Philadelphia Inquirer, 9/21/01)

 

MoveOn Peace Website: “A Non-Military Response Is The Best Strategy For A Permanent End To Terror.”  “Why peace?  Because we want justice for our dead; and because we want our safety back.  Because we want a world in which the events of September 11 can never be repeated.  We support President Bush’s resolve to end terrorism, but not his military agenda for doing it. … It is our strong belief that a non-military response is the best strategy for a permanent end to terror. … [A] war on terrorism is likely to increase terrorist activity at home, not just overseas.  Indiscriminate killings of Afghani citizens or other innocent citizens of the globe will achieve nothing but death, and it is certain to inflame retaliation and even further terrorism – and it lowers us to the level of the terrorist attackers. … [P]resident Bush must pledge to discontinue the U.S.’s own violence-supporting actions across the Middle East. … OUR CALL IS THIS: President Bush and citizens around the globe, let us not enter into World War III.  Rather, let us begin immediately to forge WORLD PEACE I.”  (MoveOn Peace Website Archive, http://web.archive.org/web/20030512072603/peace.moveon.org/peace.php3, Accessed 4/27/04)

 

MoveOn.org Petition Called On World Leaders To “Use Moderation And Restraint In Responding To” Terrorist Attacks.  “We, the undersigned, citizens and residents of the United States of America and of countries around the world, appeal to the President of The United States, George W. Bush; to the NATO Secretary General, Lord Robertson; to the President of the European Commission, Romano Prodi; and to all leaders internationally to use moderation and restraint in responding to the recent terrorist attacks against the United States.  We implore the powers that be to use, wherever possible, international judicial institutions and international human rights law to bring to justice those responsible for the attacks, rather than the instruments of war, violence or destruction.”  (MoveOn.org Website, http://www.moveon.org/peace/petition/petition.html, Accessed 12/17/03)

 

ü     Petition Stated Governments Should Not Be “Held Unduly Accountable” For Actions Of Terrorist Groups Operating Within Their Borders.  “Furthermore, we assert that the government of a nation must be presumed separate and distinct from any terrorist group that may operate within its borders, and therefore cannot be held unduly accountable for the latter’s crimes.  It follows that the government of a particular nation should not be condemned for the recent attack without compelling evidence of its cooperation and complicity with those individuals who actually committed the crimes in question.”  (MoveOn.org Website, http://www.moveon.org/peace/petition/petition.html, Accessed 12/17/03)

 

MoveOn.org Campaigns Director Eli Pariser Circulated Petition Calling For “Peaceful Response To Break The Cycle Of Violence.”  The MoveOn Peace campaign was founded independently as ‘9-11Peace.org’ by Eli Pariser, a Maine native and recent graduate of Simon’s Rock College of Bard.  In the days following September 11th, 2001, he launched an online petition calling for a peaceful response to break the cycle of violence, which was quickly signed by more than one hundred thousand people in the U.S. and almost half a million worldwide.  Eli joined forces with MoveOn soon afterward, and is now our International Campaigns Director.”  (MoveOn.org Website, http://www.moveon.org/about/, Accessed 12/17/03)    

 

ü      In Late 2001, MoveOn.org Merged With Pariser’s Website, 9-11Peace.org.  “At the end of 2001, Pariser was approached by another dot-org that had been watching the heavy traffic on his Web site [9-11Peace.org] – a group called moveon.org, started in Berkeley in 1998 by married software entrepreneurs, Wes Boyd and Joan Blades, to stop the impeachment of Bill Clinton.  Pariser joined them as a consultant and merged the two sites.”  (George Packer, “Smart-Mobbing The War,” The New York Times, 12/18/03)

 

MoveOn.Org Opposed $87 Billion For Troops And Reconstruction In Iraq And Afghanistan

 

MoveOn.Org Opposed $87 Billion For Troops And Reconstruction In Iraq And Afghanistan.  “An online political activist group is criticizing President Bush’s $87 billion request for Iraq and Afghanistan in a television ad that will begin airing on New York and Washington broadcast and cable outlets Thursday.  The commercial is part of MoveOn.org’s effort to defeat the supplemental spending bill pending in Congress. … In the spot, an announcer argues that Bush misled the country and describes ways the money can be spent domestically.  ‘We could have built 10,000 new schools.  Or hired almost 2 million new teachers.  We could have rebuilt our electric grid.  We could have insured more of our children,’ the announcer says.  The images of children, teachers and a woman reading by a flickering light illustrate the point.  ‘If there’s money for Iraq, why isn’t there money for America?’ the announcer asks.”  (Will Lester, “Political Notebook,” The Associated Press, 10/15/03)

 

MoveOn.Org Called For “Regime Change” In America:

 

MoveOn.org Called For “Regime Change” In America.  Hoping to ‘engage in a little “regime change”‘ of its own, a liberal PAC has mined anti-war sentiment to raise millions of dollars for Democratic House and Senate candidates around the country, including several who actually support going to war with Iraq.  MoveOn.org, a San Francisco Bay area-based organization with an affiliated political action committee that was originally formed to lobby against the impeachment of President Bill Clinton, has become a broad pro-Democrat operation that is primarily concerned with opposing war with Iraq. … As the group is chiefly concerned with opposing war with Iraq – its Web site prominently features a ‘No War on Iraq’ petition and a call for ‘regime change’ in Congress – MoveOn was able to raise more than $1 million in 48 hours after Congress voted to give President Bush the authority to use force.”  (Ben Pershing, “Fighting The War On The Homefront,” Roll Call, 10/28/02)

 

MoveOn.Org Opposed War In Iraq:

 

In January 2003, MoveOn.org Recreated 1964 “Daisy” Ad To Oppose War, Urge More Time For Inspectors.  Revisiting a jarring television commercial from the Cold War era, a grass-roots anti-war group has remade the 1964 ‘Daisy’ ad, warning that a war against Iraq could spark nuclear Armageddon.  Like the original, the 30-second ad by the Internet-based group MoveOn.org depicts a girl plucking petals from a daisy – along with a missile launch countdown and a nuclear mushroom cloud. … MoveOn.org released its version to the media Wednesday and was to air the ad Thursday in 13 major U.S. cities at a cost of $400,000.  Its ad includes scenes of military escalation before the mushroom cloud appears.  Then the screen goes black, with a warning that a war might end quickly – or it might spread to other countries and end with ‘the unthinkable.’  The ad ends with the message: ‘Maybe that’s why the overwhelming majority of Americans say to President Bush: Let the inspections work.’”  (Ian Stewart, “Anti-War Group Revives The ‘Daisy’ Ad,” The Associated Press, 1/16/03)

 

In February 2003, MoveOn.org And Win Without War Coalition Aired Ad Starring Martin Sheen Promoting “Virtual March On Washington” To Oppose Iraq War.  “With another national coalition, Win Without War, MoveOn developed a TV ad featuring actor Martin Sheen.  The ad ran in New York City, Washington, D.C., and Los Angeles earlier this year to promote a Feb. 26 ‘virtual march’ on Washington.  It cost about $300,000 and prompted tens of thousands of callers to flood congressional switchboards with anti-war messages that day.”  (John Ritter, “Anti-War Groups Do A Lot With Little,” USA Today, 3/31/03)

 

In July 2003, MoveOn.org Co-Sponsored Ad Campaign Accusing President Bush Of “Misleading” Americans On Iraq’s Nuclear Program In State Of The Union Address.  “With questions mounting as to why President Bush said in his State of the Union address that Iraq had tried to buy uranium in Africa, the online advocacy groups MoveOn.org and Win Without War are launching a television advertising campaign accusing Bush of misleading Americans.  The ads feature unflattering, green-tinted photos of the president, along with a graphic display of his controversial accusation, which the administration has since said was based on disputed intelligence.  ‘George Bush told us Iraq was a nuclear threat,’ the announcer says.  ‘He said they were trying to purchase uranium. … Now there’s evidence we were misled.  And almost every day, Americans are dying in Iraq.  We need the truth, not a cover-up.’  The spots direct viewers to a new Web site that the two antiwar groups have unveiled, www.misleader.org, which collects signatures for a petition urging Congress to create an independent commission to investigate what that site calls ‘the lies and distortions of the Iraq War.’  Organizers plan to deliver the first batch of signatures – at least 300,000, said MoveOn.org official Eli Pariser – on Monday.  The ad campaign will run for three days in Washington and New York, starting Monday.  It will cost $ 40,000.”  (Brian Faler, “Never Mind About The Term Limits Thing,” The Washington Post, 7/14/03) 

 

In March 2004, MoveOn.org Aired Ads Urging Congress To “Censure” President Bush For Iraq War.  “MoveOn’s new spot will air in New York and Washington, D.C., beginning Saturday.  The ad claims that Bush did not tell the truth a year ago when laying out the case for war with Iraq, and it urges Congress to censure the president.  A Bush imitator gives MoveOn’s version of what Bush should have said in his State of the Union address: ‘My fellow Americans, we have no evidence that Iraq has stockpiles of weapons of mass destruction.  No connection to 9/11.  No nuclear capability.  They pose no imminent threat to us.’  The ad then says: ‘If he said that, would we have gone to war, spending $125 billion and losing more than 500 American lives?’  The ad, according to a script MoveOn released, uses images of burned-out Jeeps, Humvees and helicopters in Iraq, where more than 500 U.S. military members have died.”  (Liz Sidoti, “New Anti-Bush Ads Assail President On Economy, Iraq War,” The Associated Press, 3/17/04)

 

MoveOn.Org Placed Ads Comparing Bush To Hitler On Website:

 

Two Ads Comparing President Bush To Hitler Appeared On MoveOn.org Voter Fund Website.  “One ad begins with Adolf Hitler making speeches, until a picture of President Bush appears.  Another also uses Nazi and Bush images, with the tag line: ‘What were war crimes in 1945 is foreign policy in 2003.’  The videos appeared on the Web site of MoveOn.org’s Voter Fund as part of a nationwide contest for an anti-Bush television ad on which the liberal group plans to spend a considerable sum.”  (Howard Kurtz, “Anti-Bush Ad Contest Includes Hitler Images,” The Washington Post, 1/6/04)

 

ü      Abraham Foxman Of Anti-Defamation League Called Ads “Vile And Outrageous” And Group’s Comments Explaining Them “Hardly Comforting.”  (Anti-Defamation League,  “Hitler Ad Should Never Have Appeared On MoveOn.org,” Press Release, 1/5/04) 

 

ü      Rabbi Marvin Hier, Founder And Dean Of Simon Wiesenthal Center, Called Ads “Shameful And Beyond The Pale [With] No Place In The Legitimate Discourse Of American Politics.”  (Simon Wiesenthal Center, “Simon Wiesenthal Center Criticizes Moveon.Org For Posting Ad Comparing Bush To Hitler,” Press Release, 1/4/04)

 

ü      James Tisch, Chairman Of Conference Of Presidents Of Major American Jewish Organizations, Called Ads “Grotesque And Outrageous.”  (“Liberal Group Comes Under Fire For Ad On Its Web Site That Morphs An Image Of President Bush Into Adolf Hitler,” The Associated Press, 1/5/04) 

 

 

 

 

MoveOn.org May Have Accepted Foreign Contributions

 

The New York Sun Reported On MoveOn.org’s Foreign Fundraising.  Foreigners opposed to the policies of the Bush administration are concluding that donations to anti-Bush advocacy groups such as MoveOn.org are a legal way for non-Americans to contribute to the president’s electoral defeat.  Their efforts are adding to the mounting legal scrutiny of the wellfunded advocacy groups that are emerging as a major force in next year’s election campaigns thanks to campaign finance laws that restrict fundraising by the traditional political parties. … This week, a group called Canadians for Clark was soliciting Canadian donations to MoveOn.org as a means to promote the presidential aspirations of General Wesley Clark. … The Web site said Canadians cannot by law contribute directly to the Clark campaign, ‘but we can support prodemocracy, progressive American organizations like MoveOn.org, which do their best to spread the ugly truth about Bush and publicize the Democratic message.’  The site reversed course Tuesday and said it would no longer solicit money for MoveOn.org, ‘as we have just become aware of the organization’s new rules concerning foreign donations.’  MoveOn.org said last weekend that it would no longer accept foreign money after a Swedish group, Democracy Aid ‘04, attempted to raise money from Europeans.  ‘One dollar per EU-citizen would suffice to raise more money than the entire Bush campaign budget for the elections in 2000.  Compare this price to the cost of having Bush in the White House,’ the group’s Web site appealed.”  (Luiza Ch. Savage, “Anti-Bush Foreigners Eye Web For Donations To Democrats,” The New York Sun, 12/18/03)    

ü      MoveOn.org Defended Legality Of Foreign Contributions, But Said That “To Avoid Even The Appearance Of Impropriety,” It Would Not Accept Foreign Contributions During Election Year.  “MoveOn.org maintained that it is entitled to accept foreign donations as long as they are not made to its political action committee or its political advertising arm.  Issue advocacy organizations can accept contributions from foreign nationals,’ the group said in a statement.  ‘But MoveOn.org will not be accepting any such contributions during an election year in order to avoid even the appearance of impropriety.’”  (Luiza Ch. Savage, “Anti-Bush Foreigners Eye Web For Donations To Democrats,” The New York Sun, 12/18/03)    

 

ü      MoveOn.org Refused To Say How Much It Received From Donors Abroad.  A spokesman for MoveOn.org could not say how much money the group had received from abroad.  He said only that the group has not sought foreign contributions, was unaware of the foreign Web sites until contacted by the press, and that the role of the group’s ‘International Campaigns Director’ was limited to organizing international rallies and candlelight vigils protesting the Iraq war, not raising money abroad.  The Canadians for Clark Web site said, ‘It is doubtful that our link has led to a single donation.’”  (Luiza Ch. Savage, “Anti-Bush Foreigners Eye Web For Donations To Democrats,” The New York Sun, 12/18/03)      

 

MoveOn.org’s Anti-Bush Campaign

 

MoveOn.org Plans $50 Million Anti-Bush Effort.  “MoveOn PAC announced plans to raise an unprecedented amount of money to defeat President Bush and elect ‘progressive candidates.’  The group plans to raise $50 million in the hopes of reducing the Republican advantage of large contributions from wealthy donors and corporations. … The unprecedented goal of $50 million is the more than the national Democratic Party raised in the past year, and is more than the National Rifle Association and Emily’s List raised in the 2002 election cycle combined.  The $50 million dollars will be split three ways, with $10 million being used to support the largest GOTV drive in American history.  $20 million will be used for advertising in swing states, and an additional $20 million will be given directly to the Kerry campaign.”  (CBS News’ “Washington Wrap,” www.cbsnews.com, 4/22/04)

 

MoveOn.org Launched $5 Million Campaign In Battleground States To Hire 500 Organizers And Assist 30,000-Plus Volunteers To Turn Out 440,000 New Voters For John Kerry.  “MoveOn PAC has launched an unprecedented $5 million campaign in battleground states to apply a technique which experts say is the single most effective strategy for voter persuasion and increased voter turnout-person- to-person contact by friends and neighbors.  MoveOn calls this precinct-level GOTV effort: ‘Leave No Voter Behind.’  Using the same technology it pioneered for grassroots organizing over the internet, MoveOn PAC has developed the capacity and infrastructure to wage a door-to-door campaign in support of John Kerry in 10,000 neighborhoods in most key battleground states.  Over the next six weeks, MoveOn PAC will hire 500 organizers to assist 30,000-plus MoveOn volunteers in turning out as many as 440,000 new votes for John Kerry – a combination of previously undecided voters and infrequent Democratic voters who would otherwise be unlikely to go the polls.”  (MoveOn.org, “MoveOn PAC To Hire 500 Organizers In Battleground States For $5 Million Get Out The Vote Campaign,” Press Release, 8/11/04)

 

Through March 2004, MoveOn.org Raised $17 Million In Soft Money For Anti-Bush Ads.  “MoveOn.org was founded by computer entrepreneurs Wes Boyd and Joan Blades and boasts some 2.3 million members.  It has used more than bake sales to raise money: MoveOn reported Thursday that its partisan soft-money arm has raised $17 million since October, including about $7 million from January through March.”  (Mielikki Org, “MoveOn Organizes National Bake Sales To Raise Money Against Bush,” The Associated Press, 4/17/04) 

 

MoveOn.org Has Spent More Than $10 Million On Anti-Bush Ads.  “A sister group, MoveOn Voter Fund, accepts soft money from wealthy donors such as George Soros and has spent more than $10 million on political ads to criticize the Bush administration.”  (Julia Malone, “MoveOn Ad Fantasizes About Bush Testimony To 9/11 Panel,” Cox News Service, 4/6/04)

 

Billionaire Financier George Soros And Partner Pledged $5 Million To MoveOn.org.  “MoveOn.org is financed in part by a $5 million pledge from billionaire George Soros and insurance magnate Peter Lewis.  The controversial Soros has also pledged millions of dollars to another anti-Bush group, Americans Coming Together, whose principal organizers include former Clinton adviser Harold Ickes.”  (Chuck Raasch, “Liberal Group Running New Anti-Bush Ads In 5 Swing States,” Gannett News Service, 12/3/03)

 

ü      Soros Compared Bush Administration To Nazis.  “Soros believes that a ‘supremacist ideology’ guides this White House.  He hears echoes in its rhetoric of his childhood in occupied Hungary.  When I hear Bush say, “You’re either with us or against us,” it reminds me of the Germans.’  It conjures up memories, he said, of Nazi slogans on the walls, Der Feind Hort mit (‘The enemy is listening’).  ‘My experiences under Nazi and Soviet rule have sensitized me,’ he said in a soft Hungarian accent.”  (Laura Blumenfeld, “Soros’s Deep Pockets Vs. Bush,” The Washington Post, 11/11/03)

 

ü      Soros: “America, Under Bush, Is A Danger To The World.”  “‘America, under Bush, is a danger to the world,’ Soros said.  Then he smiled: ‘And I’m willing to put my money where my mouth is.’”  (Laura Blumenfeld, “Soros’s Deep Pockets Vs. Bush,” The Washington Post, 11/11/03) 

 

MoveOn.org Funded Group Running Ads Attacking

President Bush’s National Guard Service

 

Texans For Truth, Group Running Ads Questioning President Bush’s National Guard Service, Was Funded By MoveOn.org. “A group called Texans for Truth will release a TV ad today in which a former lieutenant colonel in the Alabama Air National Guard says neither he nor his friends saw George W. Bush when the future president was supposed to be with their unit in 1972. The ad could renew questions about Bush’s Vietnam-era service in the National Guard, just as ads by a group called Swift Boat Veterans for Truth renewed debate over Democratic presidential candidate John Kerry’s service in Vietnam and his anti-war efforts. … Texans for Truth is an arm of DriveDemocracy, an Austin-based organization that got its initial funding from the liberal group MoveOn.org.” (Mark Memmott, “‘Texans For Truth’ Ad Challenges Bush On Guard Service,” USA Today, 9/8/04)

 

ü      Texans For Truth Was Established By DriveDemocracy, A “20,000-Member Texas Online Activist Group.”Texans for Truth, established by the 20,000-member Texas online activist group, DriveDemocracy.org, has produced a 0:30 second television advertisement, ‘AWOL.’ The ad features Robert Mintz, one of many who served in Alabama’s 187th Air National Guard – when Bush claims to have been there – who have no memory of Bush on the base. In other words, Bush failed to fulfill his military duty while others were dying in Vietnam.” (Texans For Truth Website, www.texansfortruth.com, Accessed 9/7/04)

 

ü      Launched In April 2004, DriveDemocracy Was Initially Funded By “Generous Start-Up Grant From MoveOn.org.”DriveDemocracy is a Texas-based organization initially funded through a generous start-up grant from MoveOn.org. Like MoveOn, DriveDemocracy wants to help ordinary people make their voices heard in the political arena. For too long the voices of ordinary Texans have been silenced by a system that depends on big money, influence peddling, and elite control of political institutions. DriveDemocracy wants to revitalize our democracy by creating new avenues for political involvement. … The grant from MoveOn.org comes from the remaining proceeds of MoveOn’s powerful Defending Democracy campaign, which raised $1 million in 2003 to educate voters about Republican U.S. Rep. Tom DeLay’s unprecedented mid-decade Congressional redistricting plan for Texas. DeLay’s plan disenfranchised millions of Texas voters by radically altering Congressional district lines. MoveOn’s leadership believed the remaining proceeds from the campaign should be used in Texas in ways that pay ongoing dividends to ordinary citizens. … DriveDemocracy launched in April, 2004.” (DriveDemocracy.org Website, www.drivedemocracy.org, Accessed 9/7/04)

 

Kerry Campaign & DNC Connections To MoveOn.org

 

Kerry Campaign Hired MoveOn.org’s Zack Exley As Director Of Online Communications And Organizing.   (Sharon Theimer, “MoveOn Staffer Moves On To Kerry Campaign,” The Associated Press, 4/7/04)

 

ü      Exley’s Response To MoveOn.org’s Hitler Ad Controversy: “Typical Republican Bulls--t.”  (Michael Hastings, “Getting Out The Stars,” Newsweek, 1/13/04)

 

MoveOn.org Raising Money For Kerry Campaign.  “Some help is coming from two major, if predictable, groups – the Democratic National Committee and the MoveOn.org political action committee – which are firing off separate fund-raising letters on Kerry’s behalf to as many as 4 million donors. … In addition to donations, Eli Pariser of MoveOn.org’s PAC said his group already had received commitments from donors to spend some 5 million hours working on Kerry’s behalf.  ‘The big question is whether Kerry will have the resources in this key moment to powerfully respond to the Republican attacks and present his positive vision for our country,’ Pariser wrote in his fund-raising appeal.  ‘Together, we can answer this question.  If you’ve been holding off on contributing to a presidential campaign, now’s the time to jump in.  We have a Democratic nominee, and he needs our support today.’”  (John Mercurio, “Money Matters As Race Gets Under Way,” CNN.com, 3/4/04)

 

ü      MoveOn.org Pledged To Give $20 Million “Directly To The Kerry Campaign.”  “MoveOn PAC announced plans to raise an unprecedented amount of money to defeat President Bush and elect ‘progressive candidates.’  The group plans to raise $50 million in the hopes of reducing the Republican advantage of large contributions from wealthy donors and corporations. … The unprecedented goal of $50 million is the more than the national Democratic Party raised in the past year, and is more than the National Rifle Association and Emily’s List raised in the 2002 election cycle combined.  The $50 million dollars will be split three ways, with $10 million being used to support the largest GOTV drive in American history.  $20 million will be used for advertising in swing states, and an additional $20 million will be given directly to the Kerry campaign.”  (CBS News’ “Washington Wrap,” www.cbsnews.com, 4/22/04)

 

In March 2004, MoveOn.org, The Media Fund And Kerry Campaign Ran Complementary Ads To Counter Bush Campaign Ad Buy.  Senator John Kerry’s advertising campaign is so closely complemented by those of two major liberal groups running commercials against President Bush that Republicans are accusing the Democrats of trying to evade campaign finance laws.  An analysis of advertising data provided by Republicans, Democrats and an independent group shows a striking synchronicity between the advertising campaigns of Mr. Kerry and Moveon.org and the Media Fund, which flatly deny any illegal consultations.  They have been advertising in the same 17 swing states, in most of the same markets while almost uniformly ignoring others.  In mid-March, while Mr. Kerry advertised slightly more in the morning, the groups advertised slightly more at night.  At other times of day, the two groups and the Kerry campaign together matched Mr. Bush’s advertising nearly spot for spot, in a couple of cases exceeding it.  That level of correlation has delighted Democrats, who acknowledge that the groups have gone a long way in helping Mr. Kerry to meet the advertising onslaught of Mr. Bush, whose campaign has raised far more money.”  (Jim Rutenberg, “Democrats’ Ads In Tandem Provoke G.O.P.,” The New York Times, 3/27/04)

 

Kerry Campaign In “Almost Constant Contact With Moveon.Org Staffers, Including Advanced Viewing And Reviews Of Moveon.Org Television Commercials, Online Ads, And Web Content.” “On Friday, Kerry campaign spokesman Debra Deshong was telling any reporter who would listen that there was a big difference between the negative advertisements being run by George Soros-funded MoveOn.org and Swift Boat Veterans for Truth: ‘MoveOn.org is an independent organization that existed well before the Kerry campaign,’ she said, whereas the veterans group ‘is not an independent group.’ Deshong denied that the campaign had any knowledge about MoveOn.org’s financing or motives or plans in its almost $20 million attacks against President Bush. Swift Boat Veterans for Truth has spent about $800,000 on its advertising. In fact, according to a Kerry campaign volunteer, staff members and volunteers of the Kerry campaign in New York, Washington, and Los Angeles have been in almost constant contact with MoveOn.org staffers, including advanced viewing and reviews of MoveOn.org television commercials, online ads, and web content. As well, MoveOn.org staffers provided the Kerry campaign with opposition research within the past two months, as well as advance looks at speeches made by MoveOn.org speakers, including former Vice President Al Gore. ‘We’re always running into those guys,’ says a Kerry campaign volunteer in Washington, about MoveOn.org staffers. ‘We socialize with them, we see them at meetings, we can’t avoid it. And of course we talk about the campaign. In some cities, we get our volunteers from MoveOn. No one has ever raised an issue about it.’” (“The Way It’s Done,” America Spectator Website, www.spectator.org, 8/23/04)

 

Kerry Campaign Coordinates With MoveOn.org Through “Back-Channel Relationships.” “In some cases, it isn’t just volunteers that the Kerry campaign is getting from MoveOn.org. They are hiring them too. In April, the Kerry campaign hired MoveOn’s special projects and research director Jack [sic] Exley to oversee Kerry’s campaign’s website. At the time, the Kerry campaign made a point of saying that Exley was joining the campaign with not a single scrap of paper or computer disk from his time with MoveOn. But Exley didn’t need to bring much. According to another Kerry adviser, there were already so many back-channel relationships between the two organizations, Exley’s presence to foster more was unnecessary. ‘As soon as it was clear Kerry had the nomination, we began coordinating. It’s all done through the DNC and the AFL-CIO, which is financing many of the other groups out there running anti-Republican advertising. We will sit on conference calls, but we won’t take part. We just take notes, then confer with our folks inside the DNC. That’s the way it’s done.’” (“The Way It’s Done,” America Spectator Website, www.spectator.org, 8/23/04)

 

Teresa Heinz Kerry Attended And John Kerry Called In To “East Bay For Kerry/MoveOn.org House Party” On December 7, 2003. (East Bay For Kerry Website, http://www.eastbaykerry.com/2003/12/our_third_and_f.html, Accessed 7/14/04)

 

ü      Account Of MoveOn.org-Sponsored House Party Posted On Kerry Website.The East Bay for Kerry/MoveOn House party on December 7th combined the forces of two grass-roots organizations based in San Francisco East Bay Area. We had 200 guests eating, drinking, and watching the MoveOn Documentary ‘Uncovered’ featuring Joseph Wilson and Rand Beers from the Kerry campaign. When Teresa Heinz-Kerry arrived, she handed me a pin that read in the center: ‘Asses of Evil’ with ‘Bush,’ ‘Cheney,’ ‘Rumsfeld’ and ‘Ashcroft’ surrounding it. She met, greeted and talked to a jam-packed room of Kerry supporters and others who came for the MoveOn documentary. Many were curious, others undecided, or belonging to other candidate camps. Teresa talked about her life as the daughter of a physician in Africa, about life during a repressive regime, to life inside Washington DC, and a brief intimate glimpse into her courtship with John. She told a rapt crowd about how they met and their first date, and that he did not call again for six months, adding, ‘He was slow on the uptake.’ Just as she was about to add more to the story, the phone rang. It was the Senator. The synchronicity of this call was not lost on the crowd. We all laughed. John then spoke about the Medicare Bill recently signed by the president that effectively forces people into expensive HMO plans and prevents Medicare from using its formidable consumer base to drive the bulk purchase of expensive prescription drugs down. He also spoke about the recent Bush Thanksgiving visit to our military in Iraq, carrying a platter laden down with a fake turkey, smiling for a photo op. People were hungry for the food we had prepared, but more so, hungry for John’s message of hope. … Thanks to Teresa, we kept the party going on, and she helped us here at East Bay for Kerry, throw the Mother of All House Parties.” (John Kerry For President Website, http://blog.johnkerry.com, 12/11/03)

 

DNC General Counsel Joe Sandler Also Represents MoveOn.org. “‘It’s ridiculous,’ says Joseph Sandler of Sandler, Reiff & Young, who represents MoveOn.org and Moving America Forward, two of the 527s targeted by Vogel. ‘We regard this as an effort to misuse the law to muzzle criticism of the Bush administration and to intimidate the groups and their donors,’ says Sandler, who also serves as general counsel of the Democratic National Committee.” (Jonathan Groner, “Power Punch,” Legal Times, 4/26/04)

 

MoveOn.org Officials Reportedly Talked To “A Variety Of Party Officials About Organizing And Fund-Raising” For The 2004 Election. “MoveOn officials have talked to a variety of party officials about organizing and fund-raising next year.” (David Jackson, “Internet Group Mobilizes Broad Base For Political Activism,” The Dallas Morning News, 10/28/03)

 

House Minority Leader Nancy Pelosi And DCCC Chairman Robert Matsui “Were Among Several House Democrats Who Met With MoveOn In June.” “A day or so later, Senate Democrats announced that they had invited Boyd to lunch on Capitol Hill on Sept. 18.  Hurricane Isabel forced them to cancel the date, but they intend to reschedule. … House Democrats also have taken note – particularly since Dean’s surge in fundraising and MoveOn’s strong efforts in the FCC debate, said Rep. Robert T. Matsui of California, chairman of the Democratic Congressional Campaign Committee. Matsui and Minority Leader Nancy Pelosi of California were among several House Democrats who met with MoveOn in June. What they see is a potential ally that could help them move votes and frame issues – as well as a template for the party’s own organizing activities. ‘They can move immediately, within hours, and have an impact on Capitol Hill with phones or letters,’ Matsui said.  ‘And of course, we’ve seen that they can raise money quickly.’” (John Cochran, “Internet-Based Activist Group Puts Powerful Spin On Politics,” CQ Weekly, 10/3/03)  

 

Sen. Jon Corzine (D-NJ) Was Scheduled To Appear At Press Conference On November 21 For Release Of MoveOn.org Voter Fund 527 Ad Attacking Bush On Jobs; Press Conference Was Cancelled. (“News Conference – MoveOn.org Voter Fund,” FNS Daybook, 11/21/03; Personal Phone Call To Fenton Communications, 11/21/03)

 

 

Moveon.Org Opposed War In Afghanistan:

 

After 9/11, MoveOn.org Collected Signatures For Statement Calling For “Justice, Not Escalating Violence That Would Only Play Into The Terrorists’ Hands.”  (Tony Pugh, “Against Tide, They Clamor For Peace,” The Philadelphia Inquirer, 9/21/01)

 

MoveOn.Org Opposed $87 Billion For Troops And Reconstruction In Iraq And Afghanistan:

 

MoveOn.org Opposed $87 Billion For Troops And Reconstruction In Iraq And Afghanistan.  “An online political activist group is criticizing President Bush’s $87 billion request for Iraq and Afghanistan in a television ad  … The commercial is part of MoveOn.org’s effort to defeat the supplemental spending bill pending in Congress.”  (Will Lester, “Political Notebook,” The Associated Press, 10/15/03)

 

MoveOn.Org Opposed War In Iraq:

 

“Revisiting A Jarring Television Commercial From The Cold War Era, A Grass-Roots Anti-War Group Has Remade The 1964 ‘Daisy’ Ad, Warning That A War Against Iraq Could Spark Nuclear Armageddon.” (Ian Stewart, “Anti-War Group Revives The ‘Daisy’ Ad,” The Associated Press, 1/16/03)

 

 

MoveOn.Org Called For Censuring President:

 

March 2004: “MoveOn’s New Spot  … Claims That Bush Did Not Tell The Truth A Year Ago When Laying Out The Case For War With Iraq, And It Urges Congress To Censure The President.” (Liz Sidoti, “New Anti-Bush Ads Assail President On Economy, Iraq War,” The Associated Press, 3/17/04)

 

Moveon.Org Ad Showed Hooded Statue Of Liberty:

 

“Moveon.Org … Is Responsible For The ‘Fire Cheney’ TV Ad That Shows The Statue Of Liberty With A Hood Over Its Head.” (Bill Holland, “Getting Out The Vote,” Billboard, 7/3/04)

 

 

MOVEON.ORG ON SOCIAL SECURITY

 

MoveOn.Org Launched Campaign Against President’s Plan Using “False” Advertisements:

 

FactCheck.Org: “Moveon.Org Launched A False TV Ad In The Districts Of Several House Members, Claiming Through Images And Words That President Bush Plans To Cut Social Security Benefits Nearly In Half.” (FactCheck.Org, “MoveOn.Org Social Security Ad,” www.factcheck.org/article303.html, 2/1/05)

 

FactCheck.Org: “In A Full-Page Newspaper Ad In The New York Times MoveOn.Org Repeated Its Misleading Claim, Saying ‘Privatization Means Cuts Of Up To 46% In Guaranteed Benefits.’” (FactCheck.Org, “MoveOn.Org Social Security Ad,” www.factcheck.org/article303.html, 2/2/05)

 

“MoveOn.org, A Liberal Group That Was Highly Critical Of Bush Throughout The 2004 Presidential Campaign, Today Will Begin Airing Television Ads Warning Three House Members Not To ‘Privatize’ Social Security: Reps. Allen Boyd Jr. (D-Fla.), Chris Chocola (R-Ind.), And Jim Gerlach (R-Pa.).”  (Jim VandeHei and Jonathan Weisman, “Bush May Back Curbs On Accounts,” The Washington Post, 2/1/05)

 

 

 

“An Indiana Television Station That Aired An Ad Attacking President Bush’s Social Security Reform Tacked On A Message Of Its Own After Receiving Objections From Republican Leaders.” (Tom Coyne, “TV Station Modifies Social Security Ad To Clarify Message,” The Associated Press, 2/7/05)

 

 

“The Group MoveOn.org, Which Organized Millions Of Supporters For Massachusetts Sen. John Kerry’s Election Challenge To Bush Last Year, Entered The Social Security Fight The Week Of Jan. 10 By Soliciting Signatures For A Petition It Intends To Send To Congress Immediately Following Bush’s Jan. 20 Inauguration.” (Adriel Bettelheim, “Dependable Bush Supporters Hang Back on Social Security,” Congressional Quarterly Weekly, 1/14/05)

 

 

MoveOn.Org Launched Social Security Ad Contest:

 

MoveOn PAC Held Social Security Ad Contest Modeled On 2004’s “Bush In 30 Seconds” Contest.  (Press Release, “MoveOn PAC, John Cusack & Cartoonist Aaron McGruder To Kick-Off ‘Bush In 30 Years’ Flash Animation Contest To Stop Bush Social Security Plan,” U.S. Newswire, 2/28/05)

 

During Last MoveOn Ad Contest, Two Ads Comparing President Bush To Hitler Appeared On MoveOn.org Voter Fund Website.  “One ad begins with Adolf Hitler making speeches, until a picture of President Bush appears.  Another also uses Nazi and Bush images, with the tag line: ‘What were war crimes in 1945 is foreign policy in 2003.’  The videos appeared on the Web site of MoveOn.org’s Voter Fund as part of a nationwide contest for an anti-Bush television ad on which the liberal group plans to spend a considerable sum.”  (Howard Kurtz, “Anti-Bush Ad Contest Includes Hitler Images,” The Washington Post, 1/6/04)

 

 

Laura Dawn, MoveOn PAC Cultural Director And Creator Of “Bush In 30 Seconds,” Participated In Call To Announce New Contest.    (Press Release, “MoveOn PAC, John Cusack & Cartoonist Aaron McGruder To Kick-Off ‘Bush In 30 Years’ Flash Animation Contest To Stop Bush Social Security Plan,” U.S. Newswire, 2/28/05)

 

“The Original Idea For Developing The Ads Came Last Year From [Laura] Dawn … Dawn, Moby And Pariser Designed A Competition For MoveOn Supporters To Submit Homemade Ads Against Bush … That Effort Drew Enormous Publicity For MoveOn, But Also Exposed The Group To Intense Criticism When One Contestant Submitted An Ad Likening Bush To Hitler.” (Ronald Brownstein, “Tapping Talent, Not Just Names,” Los Angeles Times, 7/4/04)

 

ACTFORLOVE.ORG DATING SERVICE

 

In May 2003, Extreme Campaigns Launched An Online Dating Service For Liberals And Progressives.  ActForLove.org, a cause-oriented personals service that lets activists participate in online advocacy and find dates at the same time, was launched today by Extreme Campaigns.  Via its partnership with Spring Street Networks, the service is able to offer new members access to over 1,000,000 personals, as well as cutting-edge features such as real-time video chat.  Rumsfeld.org, geared specifically towards anti-war efforts, was also launched as a sub-brand of ActForLove.org (http:/www.ActForLove.org).”  (Extreme Campaigns, “Extreme Campaigns Launches ActForLove.org, Rumsfeld.org Activist Dating Service,” Press Release, 5/20/03)

 

Extreme Campaigns’ President, John Hlinko, Is A Veteran Of MoveOn.org And DraftWesleyClark.com.  “Extreme Campaigns specializes in creative, high-impact campaigns designed to attract, engage, and motivate supporters for causes and candidates.  The firm is led by grassroots campaign expert John Hlinko.  Hlinko, a long-time Internet activist and even longer-time dater, is a veteran of MoveOn.org, DraftWesleyClark.com, JustSayBlow.com, and a range of other cause-oriented efforts.  Throughout his career, he has been particularly active on the guerrilla marketing front, and has appeared in this context on CNN and Fox and been covered by Wired, Salon.com, and NPR, In 1998, he helped lead MoveOn.org, an anti-impeachment petition that generated over half a million signatures and several million dollars in donations.  He also founded and led JustSayBlow.com, a semi-comedic effort against a particularly stupid Drug-War policy.  And, he once showed up in Senator Mitch McConnell’s office to lobby for campaign finance reform dressed as a pile of laundry.”  (Extreme Campaigns, “Extreme Campaigns Launches ActForLove.org, Rumsfeld.org Activist Dating Service,” Press Release, 5/20/03)

 

Hlinko On ActForLove.org Launch.  “‘Activism is sexy, activists are sexy, and it’s high time that all humans were offered a way to “take action” while “getting action,”‘ said John Hlinko, president of Extreme Campaigns and founder of ActForLove.org.”  (Extreme Campaigns, “Extreme Campaigns Launches ActForLove.org, Rumsfeld.org Activist Dating Service,” Press Release, 5/20/03)