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Senate candidate in Mo. buys airtime for anti-Semitic ads

By The Associated Press
03.30.10

KANSAS CITY, Mo. — A fringe candidate in Missouri's high-profile U.S. Senate race has been buying radio spots to air anti-Semitic ads goading white people to "unite" and "take our country back."

Glenn Miller, 69, of rural southwest Missouri, has registered as a write-in candidate to replace retiring Republican Sen. Kit Bond. He will likely face U.S. Rep. Roy Blunt, the leading Republican, and Democratic front-runner Secretary of State Robin Carnahan in the November general election.

"I'm going to reach every nook and cranny in the state of Missouri because that's where the votes are," said Miller, who campaigned for Congress in 2006 on a similar platform. He said he collected fewer than 40 votes then.

Miller's ads come a few months after Illinois Republicans condemned candidate Andy Martin's political ad questioning the sexual orientation of Rep. Mark Kirk, the party's front-runner in that U.S. Senate race.

Bond's spokesman Jordan Clothier said his office had received several calls about the ads. Bond finds the language and the ads "abhorrent" and has asked the Federal Communications Commission to conduct an inquiry, he said.

Blunt's spokesman Rich Chrismer said the congressman considered the ads "disgusting." Carnahan's office did not return a call seeking comment in time for this story.

Miller's radio ads began airing in the Springfield area in early March and in Kansas City last week. While the ads focus on Jews, they also criticize immigrants and minorities.

Four of Miller's ads are scheduled to begin airing today for about a week on radio stations KRMO and KSWM in southwest Missouri.

He also has asked for ad rates from KSD radio in St. Louis, said Beth Davis, president and market manager for Clear Channel, St. Louis. She said she had discussed the possibility of running Miller's ads with the company's lawyers. If the station does run the ads they will be preceded by a disclaimer about federal laws on political ads, Davis said.

Radio station KMBZ in Kansas City, which recently ran Miller's ads, did not return a call seeking comment in time for this story.

The FCC requires broadcast stations to give qualified federal candidates access to airtime. Federal law also requires candidates to pay for the airtime and says the stations can't censor or edit the ads.

Miller has been registered as a candidate with the Missouri secretary of state's office since February but has not yet registered with the Federal Elections Commission.

The Southern Poverty Law Center, which tracks hate groups, says Miller, a former leader of the White Patriot Party, called for "total war" against the federal government, blacks and Jews in the 1980s. Miller describes himself as a white separatist, and his Web site has photos of the Confederate flag, as well as complaints about minorities and media leaders.

Dewayne Grandy, president of the Talon Broadcasting Group, said yesterday that he consulted the FCC before deciding to run Miller's ads beginning today.

An FCC spokesman said Grandy and other station owners may have some latitude with Miller's ads because the general election is more than seven months away. The federal law applies within 45 days of a primary or 60 days of a general election, unless the election is already in full swing.

But Grandy said he didn't feel he could afford to risk getting sued by Miller for not airing his ads without an ironclad guarantee from the FCC that refusing to run the ads would not lead to legal trouble or put his broadcast license at risk.

"I'd be more than happy to not run his ads if the FCC could guarantee me that I could not be sued," Grandy said.

Miller's ads "run the spectrum" and each will be preceded by an explanation about the FCC requirements on political ads, he said.

Radio company president says he'll broadcast ads because he can't afford to risk getting sued by Glenn Miller for not airing them. By The Associated Press

KANSAS CITY, Mo. — A fringe candidate in Missouri's high-profile U.S. Senate race has been buying radio spots to air anti-Semitic ads goading white people to "unite" and "take our country back."

Glenn Miller, 69, of rural southwest Missouri, has registered as a write-in candidate to replace retiring Republican Sen. Kit Bond. He will likely face U.S. Rep. Roy Blunt, the leading Republican, and Democratic front-runner Secretary of State Robin Carnahan in the November general election.

"I'm going to reach every nook and cranny in the state of Missouri because that's where the votes are," said Miller, who campaigned for Congress in 2006 on a similar platform. He said he collected fewer than 40 votes then.

Miller's ads come a few months after Illinois Republicans condemned candidate Andy Martin's political ad questioning the sexual orientation of Rep. Mark Kirk, the party's front-runner in that U.S. Senate race.

Bond's spokesman Jordan Clothier said his office had received several calls about the ads. Bond finds the language and the ads "abhorrent" and has asked the Federal Communications Commission to conduct an inquiry, he said.

Blunt's spokesman Rich Chrismer said the congressman considered the ads "disgusting." Carnahan's office did not return a call seeking comment in time for this story.

Miller's radio ads began airing in the Springfield area in early March and in Kansas City last week. While the ads focus on Jews, they also criticize immigrants and minorities.

Four of Miller's ads are scheduled to begin airing today for about a week on radio stations KRMO and KSWM in southwest Missouri.

He also has asked for ad rates from KSD radio in St. Louis, said Beth Davis, president and market manager for Clear Channel, St. Louis. She said she had discussed the possibility of running Miller's ads with the company's lawyers. If the station does run the ads they will be preceded by a disclaimer about federal laws on political ads, Davis said.

Radio station KMBZ in Kansas City, which recently ran Miller's ads, did not return a call seeking comment in time for this story.

The FCC requires broadcast stations to give qualified federal candidates access to airtime. Federal law also requires candidates to pay for the airtime and says the stations can't censor or edit the ads.

Miller has been registered as a candidate with the Missouri secretary of state's office since February but has not yet registered with the Federal Elections Commission.

The Southern Poverty Law Center, which tracks hate groups, says Miller, a former leader of the White Patriot Party, called for "total war" against the federal government, blacks and Jews in the 1980s. Miller describes himself as a white separatist, and his Web site has photos of the Confederate flag, as well as complaints about minorities and media leaders.

Dewayne Grandy, president of the Talon Broadcasting Group, said yesterday that he consulted the FCC before deciding to run Miller's ads beginning today.

An FCC spokesman said Grandy and other station owners may have some latitude with Miller's ads because the general election is more than seven months away. The federal law applies within 45 days of a primary or 60 days of a general election, unless the election is already in full swing.

But Grandy said he didn't feel he could afford to risk getting sued by Miller for not airing his ads without an ironclad guarantee from the FCC that refusing to run the ads would not lead to legal trouble or put his broadcast license at risk.

"I'd be more than happy to not run his ads if the FCC could guarantee me that I could not be sued," Grandy said.

Miller's ads "run the spectrum" and each will be preceded by an explanation about the FCC requirements on political ads, he said.


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