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More on the Sex-Ed for Kindergarteners Ad

1:46 PM, Sep 18, 2008 • By JOHN MCCORMACK
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Marc Ambinder writes:

even though the [McCain] campaign had, it turns out, more evidence for their claim that Obama supported sex-education for kindergartners, it took the campaign a week to lay out the case, and when they did, no one was inclined to believe them because they'd just spent the past week questioning the notion of truth

I assume that by "more evidence" Ambinder is referring to Byron York's excellent piece which pointed out that the text of the bill Obama supported stated:

Each class or course in comprehensive sex education in any of grades K through 12 shall include instruction on the prevention of sexually transmitted infections, including the prevention, transmission and spread of HIV.

It's odd that Ambinder criticizes the McCain campaign for taking "a week to lay out the case". That section of the bill was specifically highlighted by the McCain campaign and the RNC in the September 9 emails announcing the ad; a number of blogs pointed it out. Is the McCain campaign responsible for the mainstream media's choice to ignore the text of the bill and buy Obama's excuse that the bill merely would have required kindergarteners to learn what constitutes inappropriate touching?

Furthermore, what does Ambinder mean when he writes that the McCain campaign questioned the "notion of truth"? Is he referring to McCain spokesman Brian Rogers's statement that "We're running a campaign to win. And we're not too concerned about what the media filter tries to say about it."

I think that Rogers was saying that the McCain campaign was saying that the media don't care about the truth, as born out by Joe Klein's latest Time column, which repeats the McCain's-a-liar trope and ignores the text of the sex-ed bill.

The bill Obama supported may have called for age appropriate sex-ed, but it also called specifically for K-12 education on HIV. I don't think that parents want their kindergarteners discussing STDs, no matter how "age appropriate" Planned Parenthood and the authors of that bill intended it to be.