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Jewish World Review Nov. 5, 2002 / 30 Mar-Cheshvan, 5763

Andy Borowitz

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Consumer Reports

Politician accidentally airs positive ad

Commercial praising opponent quickly pulled | An Indiana candidate for the U.S. House of Representatives apologized to supporters last night for airing a so-called "positive ad" praising the attributes of his opponent in the race.

"Once I found out that this ad was airing, I pulled it immediately," candidate Bud Phelan told supporters last night at a rally in Gary. "Positive ads have no place in this or any political race."

Viewers across the state were shocked over the weekend when the Phelan ads praising Phelan's opponent, Carlton Burriss, began airing.

Instead of the customary ominous drumbeats, unflattering black-and-white photos and damning quotes taken out of context that have become staples of negative ads, the spot stuck to the facts as it praised Mr. Burriss's ample qualifications and outstanding record.

Senior members of Mr. Phelan's party privately lambasted their candidate for airing the positive ad.

"If he's doing this positive junk now, it makes you wonder what he'll do in Washington," one party pro said.

In the Phelan camp, aides to the candidate were scrambling to explain the last-minute decision to "go positive."

"It was a total goof on our part," said one campaign staffer. "After all of the terrific negative ads we've run, though, it seems a shame to think that this campaign is going to remembered for the one positive one that slipped out."

As of late last night, the Phelan campaign was working overtime to remedy the situation, producing an Election Day attack ad claiming that their opponent wants to raise taxes and kill senior citizens.

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JWR Contributor Andy Borowitz, a former president of the Harvard Lampoon, is a regular humor columnist for, The New Yorker, The New York Times and TV Guide. Recognized by Esquire magazine as one of the most powerful producers in television, he was the creator and producer of the hit TV series The Fresh Prince of Bel-Air and producer of the Oscar-nominated film Pleasantville. He is the author, most recently, of "Trillionaire Next Door: The Greedy Investor's Guide to Day Trading" and "Rationalizations to Live By". Comments by clicking here. Visit his website by clicking here.


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© 2002, Andy Borowitz