Despite a letter of complaint from the White House, Topp Telecom will continue using Mr. Clinton's finger-wagging denial in an ad for its Tracfone currently running in five markets.
The ad from Blum Group, New York, features former President Nixon publicly saying during the Watergate investigation that he was not a crook; former President Bush saying, "Read my lips, no new taxes," during a speech to a Republican National Convention; and President Clinton's denial of his relationship.
The commercial is built around the theme of doubletalk in the cellular phone industry. Tracfone is a phone with prepaid cellular service.
"It's not just bipartisan, it's non-partisan," said Alan Blum, agency president.
The ad has been running since Jan. 8 and aired in as many as eight markets.
Mr. Blum said this ad represents less than 10% of the company's advertising, budgeted at about $20 million annually.
In a letter dated Jan. 30, the White House cited a "longstanding policy precluding the use of the president's name, likeness, words or activity in any advertising and commercials" and requested the ad be pulled.
Topp Telecom has rejected that request, said Mr. Blum, who added that the company has no immediate plans to air it after the end of the flight this month. But he said neither he nor the company would preclude the spot from running again.
NO PULL-DOWN-YOUR-PANTS AD
Mr. Blum said the ad wasn't aimed at President Clinton but at rivals' statements in the phone wars.
"It's easy to think this is pull-down-your-pants, get-attention advertising, but the focus is on the benefits of Tracfone against the doubletalk in the phone