Market Crash Hits Political Attack Groups

NPR reports, "In a presidential race that seems to include every possible political strategy ... [t]here have been no high-impact independent groups along the lines of the Swift Boat Veterans for Truth, the group that played a prominent role in attacking John Kerry four years ago. ... After the Dow Jones industrial average's record 777-point plunge last month, wealthy donors didn't have so much wealth. In contrast, one donor to the American Issues Project gave nearly $3 million for an ad in August linking Barack Obama with former militant Bill Ayers. Chris LaCivita from Swift Boat Veterans for Truth produced the ad. He says they had more ideas for going after Obama, but they were stymied. ... Even if the money is there, this sort of attack ad may not work as well as it used to. A veteran of liberal groups, Tom Matzzie, says these ads can't get a good media ride anymore, thanks to Internet-based fact-checking. 'The swift-boaters of the future are not going to be broad spectrum. They're going to be narrowcast, is my view,' he says. That is, aimed at demographic niche groups, where they might not draw so much scrutiny."