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Laura Bush Requests Removal from Marriage Equality Ad: VIDEO


Former First Lady Laura Bush has asked the Respect for Marriage Coalition (spearheaded by HRC and Freedom to Marry) to remove her from a new ad which is the centerpiece of a $1 million media campaign in support of marriage equality, the Dallas Morning News reports:

RfmcThe advertising blitz, first reported by Politico, features a clip of Bush talking to Larry King on CNN in 2010 and saying, “When couples are committed to each other and love each other then they ought to have the same sort of rights that everyone has.”

But Bush spokeswoman Anne MacDonald said in a statement Wednesday that the former first lady “did not approve of her inclusion in this advertisement nor is she associated with the group that made the ad in any way.”

“When she became aware of the advertisement last night, we requested that the group remove her from it,” MacDonald said.

The ads began airing Wednesday on cable.

The full-page newspaper ad (right, inset) which began running in major newspapers including The New York Times, The Wall Street Journal, and The Washington Post , also features Mrs. Bush's quote and image.

Watch the ad, AFTER THE JUMP...

MSNBC Speaks to FTM's Evan Wolfson About Marriage Equality Ad Campaign: VIDEO
Cheney, Laura Bush, Colin Powell Voice Support for Marriage Equality in New Ad: VIDEO

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  1. Khunt.

    Posted by: Mykelb | Feb 21, 2013 7:00:12 AM

  2. That's the thing about going on Larry King Live- it's a fairly public forum. You can't act like the audience was eavesdropping on a private conversation, and ask for your privacy respected.

    Republicans embrace equality in fits and starts- it's a real aching process for them. They have this notion that straight, white, Protestants really are better than gays, blacks and Jews and that mingling with us and our causes is a messy, distasteful business. I know, because I'm descended of them. I have golfed with them in country clubs, I have heard every despicable word of it.

    Posted by: Rob | Feb 21, 2013 7:13:42 AM

  3. While I wish she had not asked to be removed, HRC should have gotten permission first to use her words and her image. They should take her out of it.

    Posted by: Eric | Feb 21, 2013 7:20:24 AM

  4. Seems like they should have cleared this with her first. And if she had declined to participate, her daughter would probably have been willing.

    Posted by: Lars | Feb 21, 2013 7:24:26 AM

  5. People are used in ads all the time without their permission. Usually it's news anchors or political TV pundits. But, if she's not fully supportive of equality it should be made known and she should be removed from the ad. We only want full supporters.

    Posted by: Brian in Texas | Feb 21, 2013 7:27:27 AM

  6. It was a public statement. Sorry, Laura.

    Posted by: The Milkmanan | Feb 21, 2013 7:47:37 AM

  7. must still be fundraising for hubby's liebrary.

    Posted by: my2cents | Feb 21, 2013 7:50:40 AM

  8. Sorry, I smell a rat.

    There's no conceivable way that the HRC did not contact her and/or that she didn't know her image and quote would be used. I simply don't believe this crap. I think someone has been pressured BIG TIME by the Right to get herself removed.

    Yes, if she's going to be a turncoat on her own earlier beliefs, then we don't want her on our side anyway.

    Posted by: johnny | Feb 21, 2013 7:57:41 AM

  9. It's fine. She's just a turncoat. The ad has been seen by millions already, so it's sort of irrelevant at this point, but yeah, she should be eliminated from the video. We don't want fake supporters.

    Posted by: Francis | Feb 21, 2013 8:07:52 AM

  10. I agree with Johnny, the HRC would be smart enough to make sure it was legally OK to use her in the ad. I think Georgie and/or her in-laws made her do this. Gotta love the GOP.

    Posted by: Jack M | Feb 21, 2013 8:08:03 AM

  11. I think JOHNNY is correct. HRC is not the new kid on the block, and I'm certain that the professionals that operate the business are aware that it is standard operating procedure to notify and get permission to use images and quotations of people being featured in published articles.

    Posted by: LOL | Feb 21, 2013 8:09:16 AM

  12. I'm on Laura Bush's side here.

    Posted by: rise | Feb 21, 2013 8:10:04 AM

  13. Since this is an advocacy/political ad and it is not for commercial purposes, they really do NOT need her permission to use her words. If that were the case, almost every political ad out there would need to get the permission of their opponent when they used their image, likeness or actual quotes in an ad. I am sure Obama did not want some of the ads Mitt Romney ran used, and I also know Mitt Romney would certainly not want the "47% " secret video used in an ad.

    Posted by: SeanUMich | Feb 21, 2013 8:17:33 AM

  14. As far as I am concerned, the approbation of Rethuglicans on ANY issue is the kiss of death to me. This woman was married to the worst president of all times. What the hell do I care what she thinks...much less Cheney! Do you really think they will change the minds of bigoted Rethugs out there?

    Posted by: candideinnc | Feb 21, 2013 8:18:27 AM

  15. Sorry Honey, but your statements are the public's now. I'm sure some politician would love to be able to tell his opponent not to use his words in an attack ad.

    Posted by: Mawm | Feb 21, 2013 8:21:41 AM

  16. What's her problem?

    Posted by: Reality | Feb 21, 2013 8:22:52 AM

  17. There are some really dump comments on this thread. No they don't need her permission to use her statements.

    Posted by: Mawm | Feb 21, 2013 8:24:47 AM

  18. They of course should have at least as a courtesy informed her of their plans beforehand. Either way, they got publicity. Maybe this is the whole point.

    Posted by: ratbastard | Feb 21, 2013 8:34:56 AM

  19. Get over yourself, Laura.

    Posted by: Andy | Feb 21, 2013 8:36:10 AM

  20. Not exactly the same, but this reminds me of Cindy McCain's flip flop on DADT, publicly complaining that gays can't serve openly, then reneging later in statement saying she supported her husband's position.

    Posted by: Dastius Krazitauc | Feb 21, 2013 8:39:59 AM

  21. Yes, god forbid anyone from that heinous, craven family actually do anything for equality, ANY kind of equality. IIRC, some of her "pro-gay" statements were about when she recalled asking George W *not* to exploit anti-gay animus in the election because they had (the ubiquitous and invisible) "gay friends." But he and Ken Mehlman did it anyway.

    From a legal standpoint she's a public figure making a statement in a public forum and the HRC can use it if they want. However, since the depth of her support has all the weight of gnat fart in a wind-tunnel maybe they should remove it.

    I'm torn. Part of me thinks they should take the shallow tw@t to the wall and MAKE her publicly state she doesn't support marriage equality before removing it. Letting her off the hook with this bullcorn over "permission," which wasn't needed to begin with, is too easy. It's YOUR legacy, Pickles. Either state your position outright or stand by your own past words. Which is it going to be?

    Posted by: Caliban | Feb 21, 2013 8:53:08 AM

  22. What a two-face b$&@h! I'm sure what she wants is to get paid to be on the ad. After all, who is going to support her husband's "skill" of painting?

    Posted by: Chris in Irvine | Feb 21, 2013 8:55:29 AM

  23. The HRC should respect Mrs. Bush's wishes and remove her segment from the ad. I can't believe the HRC did not contact her first. Don't turn this ad into a $1M disaster, it will cost a lot more than that to fix.

    Posted by: AdamTh | Feb 21, 2013 9:14:24 AM

  24. um....Laura, you said this on tv already. In public. Anyone can youtube it, or use it. They're not using you to sell a product, they're just showing you actually saying what you said, when you said it. You think every time John Stewart or Colbert show and then mock a clip they ask permission first? That politicians ask their opponents if they can use a statement they made somewhere?

    You said it, millions watched it in real time, now it's out there, forever. Thanks for the help!

    Posted by: Michaelandfred | Feb 21, 2013 9:21:37 AM

  25. The thing is, Laura Bush *never* stated that she supported marriage equality.

    When asked by Larry King whether or not she supported 'gay marriage', she said:

    "Well, I think that we outta definitely look at it and debate it. I think there are a lot of people who have trouble coming to terms with that because they see marriage as traditionally between a man and a woman, uh, but I also know that, you know, when couples are committed, um, to each other and love each other that, um, they outta have, I think, the same sort of rights as everyone else."

    King then asks "So would that be an area where you disagree?"

    Bush responds, "Um, I guess that would be an area where we disagree. I mean, I understand totally what George thinks and what other people think about marriage being between a man and a woman and it's a real reversal, really, for that to, um, to, um, accept that, gay marriage...

    King interrupts and asks "But you do?"

    And Bush responds "But I think we could, yeah."

    That is *hardly* a ringing endorsement for marriage equality. If you look at her statement about having "the same sort of rights as everyone else", that could EASILY be interpreted to mean all the rights of marriage except for the use of the word 'marriage'--which we all know is a 'separate but equal' status and therefore unequal. But gay groups took Bush's words, interpreted them in a way that fit their narrative that she was an ally, and ran with it as an endorsement of our equality--something that I truly don't think she ever intended to express.

    Posted by: peterparker | Feb 21, 2013 9:29:30 AM

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