Karl Rove appeared on Fox News this morning, in part to discuss an ad that his group, American Crossroads, created to elbow Hillary Clinton over the Benghazi mess. It alleges a coverup of the truth about Benghazi, with Clinton right in the center of it all.
Over the weekend, Bill Kristol of the Weekly Standard railed against such advertisements and urged a de-politicization of Benghazi. “That is just fundraising by American Crossroads and these other groups. It’s ridiculous; there’s no campaign going on,” said Kristol.
On Fox this morning, Rove expressed his frustration with Kristol. “I understand that criticism of the Obama administration is going to immediately have Democrats saying you’re politicizing; it’s all politics. I’m surprised at Bill Kristol, whose magazine has been critical of the Obama administration, would join in that chorus. It’s a chorus that consists of Jay Carney and the Democrat leadership.”
That’s Rove’s version of a fair shot. But he couldn’t help himself from closing the segment with a cheap one: “One more quick thing: more people have seen this ad than subscribe to the Weekly Standard, which has been covering the same story and making the same points,” argued Rove.
Impressive TV skills, Karl Rove. But you’re not getting that apples-v.-oranges argument past the Erik Wemple Blog. Like any great political attack, this one has a certain amount of factual grounding: According to its own Web site, the Weekly Standard has a circulation of about 100,000 and “growing.”
A YouTube version of Rove’s ad shows 109,414 views.
So Rove wins? Not even close. It costs money to subscribe to the Weekly Standard — $64 for the print thing and $99 for “access on all formats.” It does not cost money to view the American Crossroads ad on Clinton.
Conclusion: This is an unfair Karl Rove media attack.