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NEW VIDEO: Meet Gabriel Gomez: Spokesman For Right-Wing, Secretly-Funded Special Interest Group That Attacked President Obama Over Killing of bin Laden

Thursday, May 2, 2013

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE

Contact: Andrew Zucker: 617-398-0428; Giselle Barry: 781-960-5338

Video Highlights Gomez Role On Two-Year Anniversary of Death of bin Laden 

Charlestown, Massachusetts – Gabriel Gomez says he is “a new kind of Republican,” but less than a year ago he was a spokesman for a right-wing, secretly–funded special interest group that tried to “swift boat” President Obama’s handling of the killing of Osama bin Laden.

The “anonymously funded group,” Special Operations OPSEC Education Fund, spent nearly $500,000 attacking President Obama in swing states, and filmed a radical anti-Obama video called “Dishonorable Disclosures,” which accused Obama of politicizing bin Laden’s death, and risking American lives.

Joint Chiefs Chairman Gen. Martin Dempsey denounced OPSEC for “using the uniform” for “partisan politics. 

OPSEC has deep “Tea Party and GOP ties.” Its founder ran for Congress as a Republican, its Treasurer runs a Republican-aligned consulting firm and the group “has been fundraising” on Gomez’s behalf, according to press reports. 

WATCH: Meet Gabriel Gomez: Spokesman For Right-Wing, Secretly-Funded Special Interest Group That Attacked President Obama Over Killing of bin Laden.

OPSEC Video

“Less than a year before launching his campaign for Senate, Gabriel Gomez was a spokesman for a right-wing, secretly-funded special interest group that spent half a million dollars during the 2012 election attacking President Obama over the killing of Osama bin Laden,” said Markey campaign spokesman Andrew Zucker. “Unfortunately for Gomez, his cliché attempts to rebrand himself as ‘a new kind of Republican’ are entirely inconsistent with his role as the public face for a group whose sole purpose was ‘swift boating’ President Obama. On the two year anniversary of bin Laden’s death, Gabriel Gomez owes the people of Massachusetts truthful answers about whether he still believes President Obama politicized the death of bin Laden, and whether he’s currently fundraising with the fringe organization, as has been reported.”

GOMEZ ADVOCATED FOR A GROUP THAT ATTACKED OBAMA OVER THE DEATH OF BIN LADEN

VoteVets.org: Gomez Advocated For A Far Right Organization That Took False, Misleading And Cheap Shots At President Obama.  “Gomez also became a spokesman for a group of veterans that created a controversial 2012 video attacking Obama for jeopardizing national security by releasing information related to the killing of Osama bin Laden. ‘This guy hung out with the far right in American politics to try to take a cheap shot at the president on an issue that wasn’t accurate,’ said Jon Soltz, co-founder of VoteVets.org, who opposed Gomez on MSNBC’s ‘Hardball with Chris Matthews.’”  [Springfield Republican, 3/22/13] 

Gomez Attacked President Obama Last Year For Taking Too Much Credit For The Death Of Osama Bin Laden.  According to the Boston Globe, “During an interview last year on MSNBC, Gomez credited Obama for giving the green light for the special operation to kill bin Laden but defended the video. Gomez, pointing to past presidents, said Obama should have given more credit to the troops and taken less credit for himself. ‘The only time that these presidents, Lincoln and Eisenhower and other wartime presidents, ever used the word ‘I’ was when they said ‘I thank you’ to the troops,’ Gomez said during the interview.  In announcing bin Laden’s death, Obama credited ‘the tireless and heroic work of our military and our counterterrorism professionals’ for disrupting terrorist attacks and strengthening homeland defenses.” [Boston Globe, 02/11/2013] 

OPSEC SPENT NEARLY $500,000 ATTACKING PRESIDENT OBAMA, BUT NEVER HAD TO DISCLOSE ITS DONORS 

OPSEC Spent Nearly $500,000 Attacking President Obama. During the 2012 election cycle, Special Operations OPSEC Education Fund spent $485,000 attacking President Obama. [Center for Responsive Politics, accessed 4/25/13] 

OPSEC Was Established As A 501(c)(4) To Avoid Disclosing Donations To The Public.  According to Slate, “The group, Special Operations OPSEC Education Fund, was established as a social welfare 501(c)(4) group, rather than as a political group, which means that it doesn’t have to disclose donations to the public. The social welfare classification, as Reuters explains, means that “its primary purpose is to further the common good and its political activities should be secondary.” [Slate, 08/15/2012] 

OPSEC PRODUCED A 20 MINUTE ‘DOCUMENTARY’ THAT ATTACKED PRESIDENT OBAMA FOR POLITICIZING THE DEATH OF BIN LADEN 

Gomez Actively Spoke Up For “A Controversial Video Attacking President Obama.”  According to the Springfield Republican, ‘Before he was a Republican candidate for U.S. Senate from Massachusetts, Gabriel Gomez was active in an organization that released a controversial video attacking President Barack Obama for jeopardizing national security by releasing information related to the 2011 killing of Osama bin Laden.’ [Springfield Republican, 02/15/2013]

  • Headline – ‘Massachusetts Senate Candidate Gabriel Gomez Was Spokesman For Controversial Anti-Obama Film’  [Springfield Republican, 02/15/2013] 

OPSEC ALSO AIRED A SHORT VERSION OF ITS ATTACKS AS A 30-SECOND AD IN KEY SWING STATES 

OPSEC Aired Controversial “Bump In The Road” Ad Blaming The President For Hiding The Truth About The Benghazi Embassy Attacks. “The Special Operations OPSEC Education Fund, a political action committee made up of former special operations and intelligence members, says it will air an anti-Obama ad in key swing states during the prime-time debut of Weinstein’s new ‘Seal Team Six: The Raid on Osama Bin Laden.’ […] OPSEC’s ad, called “A Bump in the Road,” is narrated by the group’s president Scott Taylor, who says the Obama administration didn’t “tell the truth about what happened” in the attack on the U.S. consulate in Libya in September. That attack killed four Americans, including U.S. Ambassador to Libya Christopher Stevens and two former Navy SEALs working as security contractors there. “And the president says it’s just ‘a bump in the road,'” Taylor says. ‘There is nothing acceptable about playing politics with national security and American lives.’ ‘A Bump in the Road,’ which is already airing in the swing states of Ohio and Virginia, echoes criticism from Mitt Romney and a number of other Republicans upset that Obama told 60 Minutes the protests in the Middle East after the attack in Libya were a ‘bump in the road’ to democracy.” [USNews.com, 10/25/12] 

THE CHAIRMAN OF THE JOINT CHIEFS OF STAFF AND SEN. JOHN KERRY CRITICIZED OPSEC’S FALSE CHARGES 

Fox News: “Dempsey ‘disappointed’ by anti-Obama campaign by ex-military members” The United States’ top military official criticized a group of former military and intelligence operatives for its aggressive campaign against President Obama, telling Fox News that he is “disappointed” by such political activity, which he called “not useful.” The group of former CIA agents, Navy SEALs and other military members recently released a long-form political ad blasting Obama for security leaks on his watch, as well as suggesting he has taken too much credit for the SEALs raid in Pakistan that killed Usama bin Laden. “If someone uses the uniform, whatever uniform, for partisan politics, I am disappointed because I think it does erode that bond of trust we have with the American people,” Joint Chiefs Chairman Gen. Martin Dempsey said in an interview with Fox News while flying back from a trip to Afghanistan and Iraq. [Fox News, 8/21/12] 

OPSEC HAS EXTENSIVE TIES TO THE GOP AND THE TEA PARTY

OPSEC’s Founder Unsuccessfully Ran For The Republican Nomination For Congress.  According to Slate, “The group’s president is former Navy SEAL Scott Taylor, who failed to win the Republican nomination for a Virginia congressional seat in 2010.” [Slate, 08/15/2012]

MSNBC Host: OPSEC Is An “Anonymously Funded Group With Tea Party And GOP Ties.” MSNBC’s Michael Smerconish said on Hardball: “A new organization, Special Operations OPSEC Education Fund, or OPSEC for short, is going after the president for one of the biggest achievements of the Obama administration, the capture and death of Osama bin Laden. The anonymously funded group with Tea Party and GOP ties has a mission to go after all politicians who leak classified information for political purpose. But in their new documentary, they charge the president with taking sole credit of the raid and harming national security interests.” [MSNBC, 8/17/12]

OPSEC Treasurer, Michael Smith, Runs A Political Consulting Firm That Received $2500,000 From Conservative Businessman, Carl Lindler, One Of The Original Financiers Of The 2004 “Swift Boat” Campaign Against John Kerry.  According to Reuters, “Smith, a Republican political consultant, also was involved in another Republican-related group called Making America’s Promise Secure that was involved in redistricting issues.  A spokesman for OPSEC confirmed that the same Michael Smith is the treasurer of OPSEC. Smith, through a spokesman, declined to comment. Federal Election Commission filings show that one of the principal sources of finance for Smith’s Majority America group was a $250,000 donation from the late Carl Lindner, an Ohio businessman who backed numerous conservative causes – including the original 2004 “Swift Boat” campaign against John Kerry.” [Reuters, 8/18/2012] 

OPOSEC MEMBERS ARE RAISING MONEY FOR GOMEZ’ SENATE RACE 

OPSEC Members Raising Money For Gomez. “A group of former Navy SEALs and intelligence officers is asking for donations for one of their former colleagues, Republican Senate candidate Gabriel E. Gomez, saying his victory in the special election would deliver ‘a devastating blow to Barack Obama’s agenda.’ The fundraising letter from the group, the Special Operations OPSEC Education Fund, bashes Obama for his ‘sheer arrogance’ and ‘radically liberal agenda.’ ‘This is no game,’ writes Ryan K. Zinke, the group’s chairman, in a letter that asks donors to give up to $5,000 to Gomez’s campaign. ‘We are fighting for the very survival of the nation you and I love.’” [Boston.com, 4/26/13]

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Paid for by The Markey Committee