Ayers says 'secret link' with Obama is a 'myth'

Other News Materials 15 November 2008 04:40 (UTC +04:00)

Anti-Vietnam War activist William Ayers spoke out for the first time Friday, calling the Republican effort to tie him to President-elect Barack Obama during the election campaign a "dishonest narrative" with the intent of "demonizing" Ayers, CNN reported.

William Ayers spoke to ABC's "Good Morning America" on Friday.

Republicans pushed Democrat Obama's "association" with Ayers, a founder of the Weather Underground, which bombed the Pentagon, the U.S. Capitol and other targets in the early 1970s.

Former vice presidential candidate Sarah Palin repeatedly accused Obama, who met Ayers in 1995 when the former 1960s radical was a professor at the University of Chicago, of "palling around with terrorists." Sen. John McCain frequently called on Obama to "come clean" about his relationship with the "unrepentant terrorist."

But in an interview on ABC's "Good Morning America," Ayers told anchor Chris Cuomo that he doesn't know Obama any better than "thousands of other Chicagoans" and that "a secret link" between the two men is a "myth."

"I became an issue unwittingly and unwillingly in the campaign, and I decided that I didn't want to answer any of it at that moment because it was such a profoundly dishonest narrative," Ayers said.

Asked about the issue in his final debate with McCain, Obama, who was 8 years old at the time of the Weather Underground bombings, said he has "roundly condemned those acts."

"Mr. Ayers is not involved in my campaign, he has never been involved in this campaign, and he will not advise me in the White House," he said.