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Bush campaign leader chastises Kerry

Aug. 24, 2004 at 12:41 PM

WASHINGTON, Aug. 24 (UPI) -- The Bush campaign fired back at Democratic presidential candidate John F. Kerry Tuesday, suggesting Kerry was AWOL in the fight to unite America.

"The moment of truth for John Kerry has come and gone hundreds of times," Bush campaign chairman Marc Racicot said, alleging Kerry has "passed up every opportunity" to condemn Democratic efforts to divide America over the issue of military service.

During the 1992 presidential campaign it was Kerry who said, "We do not need to divide America over who served and how," Racicot recalled.

Kerry, Racicot said, should join the president in condemning the "shadowy political activity" driving the campaign.

"We call on John Kerry to join us in condemning all political activity by 527 groups," Racicot said. "There's no place in American politics for $63 million in third party activity that smears the president of the United States of America by accusing him of lying, condoning torture and poisoning pregnant women."

Racicot also asked the U.S. media to give the same level of scrutiny to liberal 527 organizations like The Media Fund and Americans Coming Together that has been brought to bear on the anti-Kerry group, Swift Boat Veterans for Truth.

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