GOP Billboard Nixed in Nashville

By Scott Hogenson | July 7, 2008 | 8:25 PM EDT

( - A Nashville billboard company is refusing to honor a contract with the Republican National Committee to let the GOP advertise a few hundred yards from Vice President Al Gore's campaign headquarters there.

Mark Peterson, the sales manager of Outdoor System's Nashville office, told that the last minute decision to cancel the contract was made by "upper management," who rejected the billboard because "we're not going to be a vehicle for negative advertising."

The billboard was to have shown a photograph of Gore hugging President Bill Clinton, alongside Gore's December, 1998 quote referring to Clinton as "one of our greatest presidents."

Officials with the billboard company's corporate offices in Phoenix were not immediately available for comment and the reason for the contract cancellation is unclear. But an official with the RNC told that Outdoor Systems Salesman Mark Sword left a voice mail message received Tuesday morning saying that selling the GOP the billboard space would not be a good "corporate move."

Outdoor Systems told that broadcasting giant CBS was in the process of buying the company, although company officials could not confirm a timeline for the transaction.

-more to follow-