This is all that remains of the very popular Ford commercial that went viral on the internet and was featured on cable news channels over the past three weeks:
According to the Detroit News, Ford has pulled the ad due to pressure from the Obama White House:
Ford pulled the ad after individuals inside the White House questioned whether the copy was publicly denigrating the controversial bailout policy CEO Alan Mulally repeatedly supported in the dark days of late 2008, in early ’09 and again when the ad flap arose. And more.
With President Barack Obama tuning his re-election campaign amid dismal economic conditions and simmering antipathy toward his stimulus spending and associated bailouts, the Ford ad carried the makings of a political liability when Team Obama can least afford yet another one. Can’t have that.
In an exclusive interview with Breitbart.com, the “star” of the popular ad, Chris McDaniel told me he was “a little bit flustered’ by Ford’s decision. He found out about it during a live radio interview this morning. “I had no idea. As soon as I got off the interview, I sent an e-mail to Ford’s VP of Marketing.” He told me, “I put myself out there on the line. You either stand behind it or you don’t.”
Ford has not yet returned Mr. McDaniel’s e-mail.
A note posted by Ford Motor Co. on Facebook responding to the controversy says:
“(W)e were not coerced into pulling the ad down. The campaign continues to run. We took the ad out of rotation after 4 weeks which is consistent with the typical lifecycle for the campaign.”
But this explanation is inconsistent with the past practice of Ford and their handling of these commercials. Other “press conference” style ads that they have produced are still available on YouTube, but the one featuring Chris McDaniel has been removed.
Mr. McDaniel says that Ford conducted “two hours of interviews” for the ad and used the famous moment where he took pride in purchasing a vehicle from a company that “didn’t take the money.” And, in true “Joe the Plumber” fashion, Mr. McDaniel has had to take some heat for his passionate stance. Many on the left accused the ad of being staged and scripted and challenged whether the sentiments were genuinely his. To combat the criticism, he took to YouTube himself and offered this response:
When I asked Mr. McDaniel what he thought about the reports that the White House may have pressured Ford into removing his commercial he said, “I understand the political world Ford lives in. I don’t fault them. But, I’m on the hook with my tax dollars on this Solyndra scandal. It’s exactly the same thing as the GM and Chrysler bailouts. Enough is enough! The only people on the hook in this country are the 50% of American who still pay taxes. And now we have the federal government butting their nose into this TV ad. Another example of them getting involved in things they have no business getting involved in. Where is the free speech of American citizens?”
With ideas like that, no wonder the White House got involved.