Lots of Harold Simmons mentions in the news today; it started last night, actually and one can't imagine why, judging from the ad after the jump, which links Barack Obama with former Weather Underground-er William Ayers, a subject discussed and more or less dismissed long ago. But a $2.9-million donation earlier this month to the American Issues Project -- "founded to champion the conservative values that have made the United States of America a blessed nation" -- will get you plenty of national PR, including reviews in The New York Times and The Los Angeles Times.
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Simmons, of course, is a Forbes fan favorite who was among those who financed the Swift Boating of John Kerry. With his buddy T. Boone Pickens off saving the world, Simmons this time around is working with Ed Failor Jr. -- who founded AIP and used to work with John McCain. Course, it was also McCain who called the Swift Boat-ers' ads "dishonest and dishonorable" back in 2004. --Robert Wilonsky