William Ayers has emerged from a self-imposed cone of silence with this Washington Post interview:
CHICAGO, Nov. 4 -- William Ayers, the former Weather Underground leader who became an issue in the 2008 campaign, said Tuesday that he is not close to Sen. Barack Obama and that Obama's opponents had turned him into "a cartoon character."
Ayers, an author and education professor at the University of Illinois at Chicago, said he thought the accusation by Alaska Gov. Sarah Palin that Obama had been "palling around with terrorists" was absurd.
.... "It's all guilt by association. They made me into a cartoon character; they threw me up on stage just to pummel me," Ayers said. "I felt from the beginning that the Obama campaign had to run the campaign and I had to run my life."
... Ayers blames the "liberal media" for failing to dismiss the Republican assaults. He called the media's performance "kind of shameful" and likened the situation to the 2004 episode when Swift Boat Veterans for Truth created a narrative that helped doom the candidacy of Sen. John F. Kerry (D-Mass.).
"The dishonest narrative," Ayers said, "is that guilt by association has some validity."
- Garry J. Wise, Toronto