Tags: | nebraska | republican | campaign | ad | willie horton

NRCC Ad in Nebraska Conjures Specter of Willie Horton

By    |   Friday, 17 Oct 2014 06:28 PM

A National Republican Congressional Committee-funded political ad in Nebraska is eerily reminiscent of 1988 spots for George H.W. Bush featuring felon Willie Horton that raised questions about Democrat Michael Dukakis – and became a key factor in the presidential race.

Titled "Nikko," the Nebraska ad uses images of convicted murderer Nikko Jenkins to slam state Democratic Sen. Brad Ashford for his support of sentencing reforms. Ashford is challenging Republican Rep. Lee Terry.

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And like the Willie Horton ads, the spots emphasize a violent convict whose ill-advised release from prison set off a shocking crime spree, The Washington Post reports.

In the Jenkins case, the convict benefited from Nebraska's "good time" policy that awards prisoners two days served for each day spent behind bars with good behavior, The Post notes.

Sentenced to 21 years for two carjackings he committed as a teenager, he was sprung after serving 10 and a half years – and then promptly went on a crime spree that killed four people.

Ashford has defended the law, and criticized Republican Gov. Dave Heineman for wanting to change it.

Last week, The Post reports, Heineman offered a preview of the NRCC ad – a copy of which was posted on The Post website – and blasted Ashford for not being willing to change the policy.

Ashford's campaign tweeted an excerpt of his endorsement by the Omaha World-Herald:


But it didn't include the first part of the editorial that noted the paper's disagreement "over the state giving good time to inmates automatically."

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A National Republican Congressional Committee-funded political ad in Nebraska is eerily reminiscent of 1988 spots for George H.W. Bush featuring felon Willie Horton that raised questions about Democrat Michael Dukakis – and became a key factor in the presidential race.
nebraska, republican, campaign, ad, willie horton
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2014-28-17
Friday, 17 Oct 2014 06:28 PM
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