Appearing July 19 on FOX News Channel's morning show FOX & Friends, discredited conservative author David N. Bossie touted his new book, The Many Faces of John Kerry, recently released by conservative imprint WorldNetDaily Books (WND Books). WND Books describes Bossie's book as a “hard-hitting, ruthlessly honest political biography of Sen. John F. Kerry that will expose the real views of and dig up all the dirt on the 2004 Democratic nominee for president.” But the very first page of Bossie's book demonstrates that the “ruthlessly honest” claim is false. According to an analysis by Media Matters for America, the book's very first assertion of fact -- three paragraphs into the book's introduction -- is a lie, as indicated by the very source Bossie cited.
From the introduction to The Many Faces of John Kerry:
In the wake of the Iraqi detainee abuse scandal in April 2004, for instance, Kerry campaign head Mary Beth Cahill made fund-raising pitches urging Kerry supporters to send money as a sign of support for her boss's demand that Defense Secretary Donald Rumsfeld resign over the scandal. The tactic led Republican National Committee Chairman Ed Gillespie to rightfully point out, “The prison images from Baghdad are clearly disgusting, but it's harder to find words to describe those whose first instinct upon seeing them is to raise campaign cash with them.” 1
The endnotes of The Many Faces of John Kerry reveal that Bossie based this claim on the May 10 edition of CNN.com's “Morning Grind” column; that column, however, specifically contradicts Bossie's claim:
RNC Chairman Ed Gillespie accused Kerry campaign manager Mary Beth Cahill of trying to raise money off the issue. ... Gillespie is a little off base. The letter Cahill sent out to supporters asked them to sign a petition calling on Rumsfeld to resign, and didn't mention money.*
The article also provided no basis for Bossie's claim that Cahill's alleged fundraising pitch urged supporters to donate money as a way of signaling their support for Kerry's demand that Rumsfeld resign.
Images of the abuse were used by the Kerry campaign to raise money a month later. Kerry campaign manager Mary Beth Cahill “made fundraising pitches over the weekend urging Kerry supporters to send money to the campaign as a way of showing support for Kerry's demand that Defense Secretary Donald Rumsfeld resign,” the Cybercast News Service reported.
Bossie's endnotes indicate he quoted a May 10 Cybercast News Service (the conservative news website founded by L. Brent Bozell III, founder and president of the Media Research Center) article to back up his assertion -- but he quoted it incorrectly. The article actually stated:
According to Gillespie, Kerry's campaign manager, Mary Beth Cahill, made fund-raising pitches over the weekend urging Kerry supporters to send money to the campaign as a way of showing support for Kerry's demand that Defense Secretary Donald Rumsfeld resign. [emphasis added]
Bossie said the Cybercast News Service reported that the Kerry campaign used the Abu Ghraib prison abuse scandal to raise money. The article Bossie cited, however, did not report that; rather, it attributed the assertion to Gillespie.