Grayson's political advertisement manipulated video footage of Daniel Webster to make it appear Webster was commanding wives to submit to their husbands, quoting a passage in the Bible. The ad shows the clip a total of four times. According to FactCheck.org, however, “Webster was cautioning husbands to avoid taking that passage as their own. The unedited quote is: 'Don't pick the [Bible verses] that say, 'She should submit to me.''”
Webster appeared on Fox News to clarify the issue:
“I was talking about the idea of praying for your wife, but don't pray to her the verses that say 'Submit to me' because that's her responsibility. You as a man, as a father, and as a husband have responsibility. So I was saying you focus on your responsibility, not on hers.”
Full video footage reveals Webster counseling husbands by instructing them to choose Biblical verses that address the role of the husband, such as “Love your wife even as Christ loved the church and gave himself for it.”
Webster's wife, Sandy, responded to the ludicrous claims made by Grayson that Webster was comparable to the Taliban based on his alleged marital views on yesterday's episode of Fox & Friends on the Fox News Channel:
He was encouraging men to love their wives and [Grayson] totally took it out of context because he was trying to teach men to pray for their wives and what to pray and how to love their wives more everyday. It's being portrayed that we should be some subservient slaves or something but that's just untrue.
Sadly, Grayson's campaign manager Susannah Randolph attempted to justify the advertisement by refocusing attention on Webster's record of “social conservatism.”
“Webster's record on women is starting to get out there. As soon as they realize he sponsored a bill to outlaw divorce, opposes abortion in cases of rape and incest, and voted for cuts in funding to domestic violence shelters, they'll see he's incredibly anti-women.”
Ironically, Webster has the lead over Grayson when it comes to female voters. Jim Lee, president of Voter Survey Service, indicates, “[Women] really loathe [Grayson].” Sunshine State News reports, “With Grayson's 33/53 favorable/unfavorable rating among women, Webster's lead among females is much stronger (45/33 over Grayson) compared to a statistical tie (41/40 Webster) among males.”
Democratic and Republican voters alike have come out against Grayson for his false allegations, calling his actions “a disgrace.” In fact, the advertisement has cost Grayson 7 points in the polls, according to the Weekly Standard:
“It turns out smearing your mainstream Republican, Baptist opponent as Talibanesque by altering video footage of him doesn't play that well in a moderate House district or among Independents. Thanks to his ridiculous rhetoric and just-released 'Taliban Dan' ad, Representative Grayson is now running seven points behind Republican Dan Webster, according to a Sunshine State poll.”
The poll shows Webster ahead of Grayson, 43 to 36 percent. As it currently stands, Grayson is now more unpopular in the state of Florida than President Obama.
Likewise, since the discovery of Grayson's despicable stunt, Webster has managed to raise an additional $70,000.
Perhaps most impressive is the immediate condemnation of Grayson from even liberal outlets like the Annenberg Public Policy Center and the Orlando Sentinel.
Andy Sere of the National Republican Congressional Committee contends that because of Grayson's actions, the Central Florida district is “ripe for a Republican pick-up,” asserting that “a large swath of independents and conservative Democrats will hand him a resounding defeat in November.”
According to FreedomWorks, Grayson has “drawn the ire” of the Tea Parties through his controversial rhetoric, style and television ads. Tom Gaitens of Florida's FreedomWorks claims, “Grayson is an obnoxious antagonist to Tea Partiers ... he's probably the biggest lightning rod-type candidate in the nation.”