The Upshot

McMahon won’t remove ad that includes footage of JFK

Holly Bailey
The Upshot

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Connecticut GOP Senate hopeful Linda McMahon is refusing to remove a Web ad that uses archive footage of John F. Kennedy talking about the importance of tax cuts.

The 30-second spot, titled "A Good Idea Then and Now," uses 1963 footage of the late president arguing that tax cuts would serve as an economic stimulus. It's a message meant to bolster McMahon's position that the so-called Bush tax cuts, set to expire later this year, should be extended.

You can watch the ad here:

Edward Kennedy Jr., the late president's nephew, sent a letter to McMahon this week asking the GOP candidate to pull the ad, arguing that it "falsely implies" that JFK would have supported tax cuts for the same reason she does. "Using President Kennedy's image in your ad gives your tax position false legitimacy," writes Kennedy, who lives in Connecticut and is supporting McMahon's Democratic opponent, Attorney General Richard Blumenthal.

[Photos: Conn. Senate Candidate Linda McMahon]

Kennedy argues that the economic climate in '63 was "vastly different" from where the country stands today -- and that, in turn, means that JFK's push for tax cuts was "very different" from the GOP's. He accuses McMahon of trying to "capitalize" on his uncle's legacy.

But in a letter Thursday, McMahon refuses to stand down on the ad. In the letter, which the McMahon campaign distributed among political reporters, the GOP nominee argues that JFK would have, like her, supported an extension of tax cuts for the wealthiest Americans. "No school of economic thought advocates raising taxes in the environment in which we currently find ourselves," McMahon writes. "Therefore, I respectfully disagree that your uncle would support raising taxes in this economy."

Not only did McMahon refuse to remove the ad, but her campaign suggested that it may be moving into TV rotation as well.

(Photo of McMahon: Matt Ford/AP)

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