Posts Tagged ‘Obama’

Dirty politics pays off for McCain

August 5, 2008

Today’s Rasmussen Reports daily Presidential Tracking Poll shows that the gap has closed. “The race for the White House is tied with Barack Obama and John McCain each attracting 44% of the vote. However, when ‘leaners’ are included, it’s McCain 47% and Obama 46%.”

There’s still 3 months to go to the election, and Obama’s still well ahead in Electoral College votes, so don’t panic. The Rasmussen Reports Balance of Power Calculator shows Obama leading in states with 210 ECVs and McCain  with 165. Leaners take Obama to 273, McCain to 227. The smart money still favours Obama, if a little less than a few weeks ago. Rasmussen Markets data gives Obama a 59.8% chance of winning the White House.

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Bayh update

August 5, 2008

Seems that there are now quite a few reasons for believing that Obama is about to announce Evan Bayh as his running mate. Expect to wake up to the news tomorrow morning in NZ.

Update: Oh well, as CNN puts it, “It happens once every four years: Political pundits, news junkies and water cooler crowds obsess over whom the presidential contenders will pick to be their No. 2.”

Bayh for now?

August 4, 2008

With the Democratic Convention only weeks away, Obama is expected to announce his running mate soon. I would have thought that Kansas Governor Kathleen Sebelius would be the best pick, being so bi-partisan, and what with all those “Hillraisers” running loose. But no, the smart money is on…

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McCain goes for the low road

July 31, 2008

John McCain has given up on fighting a “respectful” campaign and — with more than three months to go before the election — started hitting as low as he can. The dog.

It seems like just a few weeks ago he said:

“I respect and admire Senator Obama, and if I have ever treated him in a disrespectful way I don’t know of it,” he said. “Americans want a respectful debate. They don’t want us to finger-point and question each other’s character and integrity.”

Actually, it was. But now McCain’s people have figured that Americans are  still uncertain about Obama’s character, and that undermining their perceptions of Obama before he can establish his own narratives might just win them the election. (Remember, Obama’s big lead in electoral votes is fragile to a relatively small shift in the popular vote.) So they’ve started, well, questioning his integrity and character.

The shift to dirty politics was quite clear at the end of June. As BarbinMD on Dailykos puts it:

“… McCain has questioned Barack Obama’s patriotism, his commitment to our troops serving overseas and has even stooped to thinly veiled charges of sedition, and McCain is willing to distort and lie to do so. It’s become clear that John McCain has made a conscious choice to throw his much vaunted honor under the bus.”

That bus would be the “Straight Talk Express”, of course.

Here’s an example. McCain takes a quote from a Castro speech critical of Obama to try to link Obama to Castro. This played in South Florida.

[Update: The latest McCain ad has been moved to a new post above.]

McCain’s Double-Talk Express

July 26, 2008

US blogger Chris Bowers has a challenge: What Is Your Favorite Contradictory McCain Attack? Here’s his ampling from the last couple of weeks:

1. Seventeen days after taking a trip abroad to Colombia and Mexico, five weeks after giving a paid campaign speech in Canada, and two months after criticizing Obama for not going to Iraq, the McCain campaign criticizes Obama for taking a trip abroad that includes a stop in Iraq.

2. Eleven days after holding a press conference to claim that Obama is a serial flip-flopper, McCain argues that Obama is the most extremist member of the Senate.

3. Five days after releasing a documentary criticizing Obama for flip-flopping on Iraq, the McCain campaign argues that Obama is too inflexible on Iraq.

4. After spending April and May calling Obama an elitist, they spent June and July calling him “typical.”

So, people like Farrar may parrot Republican talking points about Obama’s “flip-flops”, but the fact is, “the biggest flip-flops in this campaign are the attacks that McCain makes.”

As the DailyKos puts it:

“Whether it’s Roe v. Wade or off-shore drilling or a pathway to citizenship for unauthorized immigrants, McCain has taken opposite sides. Is it flip-floppery? Or is it flim-flammery?”

“He was anti-Grover Norquist before he was pro-Grover Norquist. He opposed torture before he yielded to White House demands. He was for campaign-finance reform before he was against a reform provision he sponsored two years earlier. He opposed presidential candidates campaigning at Bob Jones University before he favored it. He was anti-ethanol, then for it. He supported flying the Confederate flag on government property before he rejected the practice. He was for talking with Hamas until he was against it. He favored privatizing Social Security before he said he never was in favor of privatizing Social Security. He opposed the Bush tax cuts for the rich until he voted for them, twice.”

PS My favourite is the criticism of Obama for going to Iraq. That really does take the cake. He went there himself, and he criticised Obama for not going there.

Attacks on spouses & political scandals

July 18, 2008

Barack Obama has struck out at right-wing criticism of his wife, Michelle. It, infuriates him, he says. In an interview with women’s magazine Glamour he singled out:

“…the conservative press — Fox News and the National Review and columnists of every ilk — went fairly deliberately at her in a pretty systematic way, and treated her as the candidate in a way that you just rarely see the Democrats try to do against Republicans… If you start being subjected to rants by Sean Hannity and the like, day in day out, that’ll drive up your negatives.”

I tuned into H&C just now to see what Hannity’s response is. “Unrepentent” would be an understatement. He did make the point that Michelle Obama is actively campaigning for her husband. The evil genius Rove opined that it would have been better for Obama to downplay the matter. I’m inclined to agree with Hannity but not Rove, for a change.

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This’ll show ’em!

July 15, 2008

I’m gobsmacked. The ‘liberal’ folks at New Yorker magazine thought it would be clever to show us just how ridiculous the vile smears of the Rove-Faux News-talkback radio right are by reifying the composite image of jihardist, unpatriotic, fist-bumping Obama.

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The race for the White House is tied? Not!

July 13, 2008

“The race for the White House is tied.” That’s how the Rasmussen Reports Daily Presidential Tracking Poll released today starts. It finds that Obama and McCain each get 43% of those polled. When ‘leaners’ are added, Obama holds a “statistically insignificant” 47% to 46% advantage.

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A bit rich

July 11, 2008

With a hat-tip to alicublog, a blog recommended by Russell Brown

You’ve probably heard about P.U.M.A. (party unity my ass) and the Hillraisers, a group of wealthy Hillary Clinton donors/fundraisers who are prepared to put women’s rights in jeopardy because their woman didn’t win the Democratic candidacy. (It was Obama’s fault that the media were sexist, apparently.) Faux News adores them, of course, and has been using them to promote John McCain.

Now “Businesswoman Lynn Forester” (as Anderson Cooper 360° introduced her) has accused Obama of being “elitist” on Faux News and CNN.

I saw the AC360 interview, but what I didn’t realise was that Lynn Forester is also Lady Lynn Forester de Rothschild, wife of British banking financier Sir Evelyn Robert Adrian de Rothschild. (More details of Lady Lynn Forester de Rothschild’s splendid lifestyle at Rumproast.)

Okay, she’s her own woman, of course. But I think that for the owner of “the most beautiful apartment in New York” to describe Obama as elitist is, well, a bit rich.

Obama — playing by new rules?

July 5, 2008

I blogged after the West Virginia primary about the possibility that the presidential election might diverge from the convential wisdom about having to carry certain key “battleground states.” That Obama could win without the Appalacians, and possibly without Florida and Ohio.

Turns out that this was Obama’s thinking all along. With remarkable prescience, Obama reportedly said last August that, “I’m probably the only candidate who, having won the nomination, can actually redraw the political map.”

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