Democratic Ohio Sen. Sherrod Brown's latest attack ad against Republican rival Josh Mandel calls him "the candidate of the big lie" -- a term commonly associated with Nazi propagandists.
“Josh Mandel: He has become the candidate of the big lie,” the ad, released Friday, states. It cites a column in the Cleveland Dispatch as the source of the quote, and goes on to say that Mandel -- who is Jewish -- might be the "most dishonest candidate in the country."
The ad does not mention Nazis, but the "big lie" expression was coined by Adolf Hitler, believing that the larger the distortion, the more likely it was to be believed. Nazi propaganda chief Joseph Goebbels also took up the term with the strategy that telling the lie often enough would eventually make people believe it.
It's the second time in less than a week the term has surfaced in politics: On Monday, the chairman of the California Democratic Party said the Republican presidential campaign was employing the "big lie" strategy.
“Joseph Goebbels’ concept was the big lie – if you tell it enough, people will think it’s the truth," John Burton said during an interview at the Democratic National Convention.
As the Washington Examiner -- which first reported on the Brown campaign's use of the term -- noted, it's not the first time the senator has associated his opponents with Nazis. He apologized in March 2011 after comparing GOP governors championing union reforms to Hitler and Stalin during a Senate floor speech.
"I look back in history (and) some of the worst governments that we’ve ever had, do you know one of the first things they did? They went after the trade unions. Hitler didn’t want unions, Stalin didn’t want unions," Brown said, before backpedaling to say, “I am not comparing what’s happened to the workers in Madison or in Columbus to Hitler and Stalin.”
(h/t Drudge Report)