Netanyahu 'enlisted' for US election ad and gets star role in Iran-centric ad bankrolled by 'Secure America now' - a non-profit group with well known Republican backers -
Washington – Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu may not have moved the elections forward to September, but in the US he already has a starring role in election ads paid for by a group
which is seen to be supporting the presidential candidacy of Republican nominee Mitt Romney.
The ad spot includes segments of Netanyahu's speech from last week in which he asks angrily why we must wait before stopping the Iranian nuclear threat. The ad which was already shown online, is being broadcast from Wednesday in swing states with relatively large Jewish communities:
Florida, Nevada, Ohio and Pennsylvania.The group behind the ad, Secure America Now, is seemingly independent of any party affiliation and in light of Romney's latest polling results in swing
states has decided to use its "doomsday" weapon – Iran – with the hope of shocking Jewish voters who have a high voting turnout.
On Sunday Netanyahu was a guest on both NBC and CNN current affairs shows where he tried to convince viewers that he did not have a preferred candidate for US president and that Israel has a tradition of supporting both parties.
Yet Netanyahu's statements failed to convince many viewers that he did not in fact support Mitt Romney and the US media swiftly published articles and editorials criticizing him.
The new ad starring Netanyahu will only strengthen these claims. The decision to use the Israeli prime minister in an election ad was made after Secure America Now conducted out a poll which revealed that over 75% of Floridians who were polled believe that a nuclear Iran could equip terrorists with nuclear weapons.
In Ohio, another swing state with a relatively large Jewish community, over 70% of those polled fear the Iranian threat.According to a Fox News national poll, Romney is currently lagging behind
Obama with 45% to Obama's 48%. Obama is also leading in Virginia, an important
swing state where he has 50% of the vote to Romney's 46%. Fox's poll reveals that Romney is 7% ahead of the Romney in Virginia and Ohio and 5% in Florida.
Secure America Now is an American tax-exempt nonprofit organization which is exempt so long as it does not openly support any of the candidates or receive instructions from either of the campaign offices.
By US law, the organization is not obligated to present the names of donors and it describes itself as a non-political organization.
According to the Politico website, the pollster for Secure America Now is John McLaughlin, who has worked with Netanyahu's Likud Party. Founders of the organization include Billy Crystal and Liz Cheney, daughter of former Vice President Dick Cheney.
A recent Gallup poll released last weekend found that 70% of US Jews still support Obama, while the GOP's candidate has only 25% support – similar to the support given to John McCain in 2008.
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