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Clergy Call For No Sleaze in Campaign '08

Outside Cleveland's First United Methodist Church yesterday, more than a dozen clergy members called for Ohio to become a "political sleaze-free zone" in next year's campaign. The interfaith activist group-We Believe-says it will hold political candidates accountable who practice mudslinging or other negative ad campaigns.

Rabbi Richard Block of Temple Tifereth Israel read a pledge the group is offering to candidates.

Richard Block: We will refrain from negative and inflammatory attack ads. We will describe truthfully what will do for the people of Ohio. We will not distort our opponents' records and positions. We will exemplify transparency and responsibility in all campaign activities.

The group denounces personal attacks and assaults on marginalized groups, and is asking politicians to focus on more critical issues such as poverty, education, and healthcare. Even though the group began as a counter to the right-wing conservative power, Block says it's civility campaign is a non-partisan movement.

So far, the clergy-members have collected a thousand signatures they say demonstrate support.

Tasha Flournoy, 90.3.