Newt Gingrich's campaign is threatening to sue Michigan TV stations that air a negative ad accusing him of supporting China's "one-child" policy, reports Politico. The mud in this case is being flung by the pro-Romney super PAC Restore Our Future, and it alleges that 1989 legislation sponsored by Gingrich and Nancy Pelosi gave $60 million to a UN program that supported the Chinese family-planning policy widely considered inhumane. But the Gingrich campaign says allegation is blatantly false—PolitiFact gave it a "pants on fire"—and if TV stations air an ad they know to be false, that's defamation and the campaign will sue.
Restore Our Future's ads are being made by McCarthy Hennings Media, which is run by the man who created the infamous Willy Horton ads that devastated Michael Dukakis in 1988, reports BusinessWeek. The super Pac is also using Mentzer Media, which is famous for its Swift Boat Vets and POWs for Truth ads against John Kerry in 2004. Restore Our Future has been “focused on tearing down the opposition,” said the editorial director at the Sunlight Foundation. “It’s almost like a scorched-earth policy, where they’re really trying to look for the weakness of a candidate and exploit it as much as possible.” (Read more negative campaigning stories.)