Bush ad uses windsurfing in attack

Kerry's pastime mocked amid criticism on Iraq

September 23, 2004|By Nick Anderson | Nick Anderson,LOS ANGELES TIMES

WASHINGTON - Amid this week's campaign clashes over the U.S. mission in Iraq and chilling reports of beheadings of American civilians, President Bush turned yesterday to a novel image to attack Sen. John F. Kerry: windsurfing.

In a 30-second advertisement to make its debut today, Bush lampoons one of his Democratic challenger's favorite pastimes while attacking him as indecisive on Iraq and other matters.

The spot includes footage of Kerry windsurfing in waters off Nantucket Island, edited to show the Massachusetts Democrat tacking back and forth to the strains of the "Blue Danube Waltz" by Johann Strauss.

"John Kerry," the ad says, referring to what it calls shifting positions on Iraq, education and health care. "Whichever way the wind blows."

Hours after the Bush campaign unveiled the ad, the Massachusetts senator fired back with his own commercial, chiding the president for making light of a war that has claimed more than 1,000 American lives while terrorists are beheading kidnapped civilians.

"In the face of the Iraq quagmire," the Kerry ad says, "George Bush's answer is to run a juvenile and tasteless attack ad" - drawing a link between Iraq and the Vietnam War with the word "quagmire."

The Los Angeles Times is a Tribune Publishing newspaper.

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