In Spite Of Bruising Ad, Harold Ford Still Likes Women And Football

You've got to give former Rep. Harold Ford Jr. one thing: He's not going to let a nasty GOP attack ad change his public views of women and football.

Ford, introduced today as the new chairman of the moderate Democratic Leadership Council, said this when asked if he was planning to attend the upcoming Super Bowl: "I love Jesus, I love girls, and I absolutely love football." You might recall that near the end of his campaign for the Tennessee Senate seat won by Bob Corker, the GOP aired a widely criticized ad that featured a bare-shouldered blond beckoning in the camera: "Harold. Call me." It was an apparent bid to poke fun at the single Ford, who had attended a Playboy Super Bowl party in Jacksonville, Fla., in 2005. Like a pro, he shrugged it off today with his trademark humor.

"It's over with. We didn't win. We ran a hard campaign. A lot of things happened right there at the end of the race," he said, that cut short his bid. He lost by 50,000 votes of 1.8 million cast. Today he predicted a comeback. "Does it hurt losing? Oh, yeah," he said. But it won't stop him from running for a statewide seat again.

"I know I want to do it again one day. In my state it takes a few times to run, sometimes one or two times to run, before you win."

By Paul Bedard