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The Democratic National Committee released this ad Wednesday, airing it in six competitive states: Arkansas, Iowa, Michigan, Missouri, Pennsylvania and Washington. The commercial is called “Myth.”


Democratic Victory 2000, composed of principals from media consulting firms Squier Knapp Dunn, Shrum Devine Donilon and consultant Carter Eskew.

The Script

Bush: “And our state is the--has done the best--provides some of the best education in the nation: not measured by us but measured by the Rand Corp.”


Announcer: “Now the new Rand study reports the achievement gap for Texas students is widening. There is serious question about the validity of scores on state tests. Texas students do not show the same gains on national tests. The percentage dropping out or failing a grade is increasing. The author concludes: ‘The Texas miracle is a myth.”’

The Pictures

Bush stumbling over words in a TV interview. Cuts to a shot of a television, with Bush on-screen, at the front of an empty classroom. The Rand study appears on the left half of the room. Words along the bottom of the screen track the announcer’s script.


The commercial is correct in reporting that the Rand study released Tuesday found the state’s claims about improvements in student test scores are dubious. The study questioned whether the state’s academic tests were a valid measure because the students did not show the same improvements on national exams. Bush responded by noting that a Rand study in July found Texas students improved faster than those in other states on the national test. Rand said both findings are valid and that the studies compared different time periods and used different methodologies.


By using the footage of Bush fumbling over his words, the Democrats are seeking to raise questions over Bush’s intelligence. At the same time, they are seeking to use the new report as fresh ammunition in their effort to undercut Bush on education, an issue where he has made strides on traditional Democratic turf.


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