Friday, October 5 2012, 10:50 PM MDT
Why Do Candidates Have The Same Tag At The End Of Political Commercials?
(KUTV) Political season means political ads and a very repetitive phrase: “I am so-and-so and I approve this message.”
While the phrase is a clear motif in American politics, Kirk Jowers with the Hinkley Institute of Politics says it’s only been around for 10 years.
So, why do they say it the exact same way?
“That’s because it was part of the Mccain-Feingold Act which was passed in 2002,”Jowers explains.
The law, sponsored by Republican John McCain and Democratic Sen. Russell Feingold is actually called the Bipartisan Campaign Reform Act of 2002. It talks about all sorts of rules and reforms that a candidate must follow when campaigning for federal office. And specifically, it says, in a TV ad, a candidate must make "a statement that identifies the candidate and states that the candidate has approved the communication."
"Ads have been getting a little nastier for candidates, so the thinking was, if you actually have to stand there and say I am Kirk Jowers and approve this message, I may not take the real cheap shot,” Jowers says.
He also says that, despite how nasty campaigns still are, he does think the law worked to clean up some of what the politicians would say.
He says, now the problem is Super Pacs, independent political groups that only became legal in the last couple years.
Super Pacs can raise unlimited money, and pretty much say whatever they want because there is no accountability.
(Copyright 2012 Sinclair Broadcasting Group)