Truth in advertising

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The most recent election was nasty and the tsunami of political ads was intellectually and morally perverse and offensive. Karl Rove and his super PAC spent more than $400 million in an attempt to buy a national election by using such ads. Regardless of how you voted Tuesday, we should all be happy that Mr. Rove failed.

Federal truth-in-advertising regulations protect consumers from false or misleading advertising. An auto manufacturer cannot claim its cars get 100 mpg when in fact they get only 20 mpg. Potato chips cannot claim to have zero calories when in truth they will make you fat. Laundry detergents cannot claim to turn your wool sweater into cashmere. Most important, Toyota cannot run ads warning that if you buy a Ford, you will run off the road and die in a fiery crash because Fords are unsafe. Freedom of speech is not freedom to lie in advertising.

We should demand passage of campaign reform legislation that holds political ads to the same standards as advertisements for cars, potato chips and soap. Political ads should be restricted to what the candidates stand for and how they intend to accomplish their agenda if elected. Period.

I am Mark Braughler and I approved this message.

MARK BRAUGHLER
Mt. Lebanon


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