John McCain is really going to regret daring Barack Obama to go to Iraq. All three broadcast network news anchors will be going along. They are eager to cover the candidate's rock star following in Europe and elsewhere.
I'm sure we will hear plenty of whining about bias from the McCain camp. And there certainly might be some. But the networks are going where the crowds are. Obama is a good news story for America, in a pit of bad news stories. And it's the network brass, concerned about viewership and advertising, who make these decisions to spend money sending their stars overseas to cover a story they could do from the studio.
I saw this story last night, and couldn't get my head around it. Obama wants to increase ground forces by 65,000 soldiers and 27,000 Marines. And he wants to pull our people out of Iraq.
Excuse me, Senator, but what the hell are you going to do with all those troops? Are you planning some invasion we don't know about?
I think this is a campaign tactic, to seize the high ground before the battle heats up, to be able to deflect attacks that he hates the military. Now he can say, look, I want to make the military bigger! I love the troops!
But it's a political game. First FISA, now this. If Obama doesn't watch out, his appeal of being the candidate of changing the way politics is played is going to fade away.
It's taken a little time for the Karl Rove "elitist" attack on Obama to sink in. But one of Josh Marshall's readers see something darker:
The key to Rove's exposition about Obama at the country club isn't the silliness of placing an African-American at a country club because of the fact that so many country clubs largely or completely or just historically exclude African-Americans. That's the way its been picked up by most bloggers and the media, and its obvious, but its not the importance of the comment, and I don't believe Rove's juxtaposition of the African-American Obama at a country club was just a clumsy attempt to paint Obama as a type of elitist contrary to his background.
The key to the statement is that in the image he is with "a beautiful date." Not Michelle Obama or, in the abstract, his wife, i.e. a wife like Michelle Obama. When you think of a "beautiful date" specifically at a country club, do you picture an African-American woman? Would Rove's target audience? Or do you picture him there, a black man, smoking a cigarette indoors at a country club, with a white woman on his arm?
Yes, it sure does look like Karl Rove is telling White America that they will have to lock up their daughters if Obama is president. John McCain will not touch any of this racial stuff, but there is a large flock of GOP hitmen like Rove who will.
Carl Bernstein says that Hillary will keep fighting until she is offered the VP spot. Bernstein knows Clinton pretty well, and he has a lot of inside contacts.
I think Obama would do just about anything to not offer the VP spot to Hillary. Anything. Especially after her "hard-working Americans, white Americans" remark. Putting her on the ticket would infuriate too many Obama backers, unite all those GOP Hillary haters, and could make John McCain president.
There is too much bad blood between them now. Obama doens't want or need Hillary and Bill Clinton trying to seize the spotlight while he's running the country.
But what if, as Bernstein says, Hillary tries to force the issue? Obama will have to shoot her down while not alienating her base. To do that, he'll need to pick a VP who can heal this division.
I've always thought that Gov. Bill Richardson would be the best VP pick. He would deliver New Mexico for Obama, and make Texas, Colorado and Nevada competitive. And his resumé balances out Obama. But taking into account Clinton's moves, this might not work out.
Another person on the short list is Kansas Gov. Kathleen Sebilius. Having a woman on the ticket might heal any rifts Obama has with women voters, and Sebilius can help Obama in the purple states by pulling in moderates. But she doesn't help him on foreign policy, which is McCain's only line of attack.
One way to help heal the rift with Clinton and help the ticket might be to pick Gen. Wesley Clark. He's an old Clinton friend, and his military experience will help counter attacks by McCain.
The wild card is Sen. Jim Webb. He would bring the military and executive experience, and he's a former Republican. And he has some skeletons in his closet in the form of sexist writings he did in the past that Hillary boosters might attack if they want to go kamikazi on Obama. Picking him would be a big FU to Hillary's people.
OK, so here's my odds list for VP:
- Clark: 2-1
- Richardson: 3-1
- Sebilius: 6-1
- Webb: 7-1
- Clinton: 10-1
He starts out by conceding that the race is over. At least he can count. He then says to ignore early polls that say Sen. John McCain has a fighting chance to win, as polls this early in the process don't mean anything. But then he goes on to say Obama is in big trouble because the polls show he has "a deep but narrow base consisting of African-Americans and highly educated whites" and that he can't win over white voters, that he is losing them 60-40.
As for the cause of this racial division, he says "But at this point it doesn’t matter whose fault it was." Then he goes on to criticize Obama supporters for their "tirades" against Hillary. He also throws in the Clinton talking point about seating the delegates from Florida and Michigan.
Gee, there is so much wrong here its here it's hard to know where to start. If Krugman thinks seating Michigan and Florida are important, then maybe he should have said something about the Clinton campaign's rejection of the newest Michigan plan to seat all their delegates. Or, when talking about "tirades" fostering racial divisions, perhaps Krugman could have mentioned Hillary's statement that her "broad" base consists of "hard-working Americans, white Americans," or Bill Clinton's remarks in South Carolina.
I could also point out that if the tables were reversed and it was Clinton who had the lead in delegates, we could say that she would be in trouble since she is losing the black vote 90-10, a group she was winning 60-40 in the past. And Democrats can't win without black votes in November.
But the biggest trap Krugman falls into is trying to draw inferences from primary results and applying them to the general election.
Look at the GOP. A couple of months ago, hardcore conservatives like Rush Limbaugh were adamantly anti-McCain. Now they are actively campaigning for him. Why? Because there is no where else for them to go.
Blue-collar Democrats who voted for Hillary aren't likely to cross over for McCain. They don't want 100 years of war in Iraq and more of the same Bush policies. And women aren't about to elect a presidnet who puts another anti-abortion judge on the Supreme Court. They might disagree with Obama, but they'll still pull the lever for him in November.
Hopefully we have seen the last of Krugman's illogically Clinton boosting.
Perhaps I've become too cynical during this long campaign, but doesn't it seem that all of this is too easy? Rev. Wright comes out and acts like a buffoon, giving Obama the chance to ditch him in a very public way, erasing any doubt if he held the same views. Could this be a set up, a gift by Wright to his friend?
Doubtful, but if Obama really does succeed, watch for the accusations to fly.
Kos breaks down Pennsylvania results and finds that Obama gained in Central PA:
Finally, we should note the irony of central Pennsylvania's support of Obama. These are the locations where you can find many of the "small towns" about which Obama was speaking in San Francisco - and yet they seemed to be tilted in his favor. In a certain sense, small town Pennsylvanians preferred Obama more than the rest of the state!
A lot has been said by the Clinton campaign about Bill Ayers, the guy who Barack Obama crossed paths with and is now the target of this McCarthyite guilt-by-association attacks. Clinton's people keep saying that Ayers had no regrets about the bombings committed in his Weather Underground days, and that he thinks they didn't do enough. Turns out that's not what he said at all. But don't let a little truth get in the way.
But if you want to see how the GOP buddy up with terrorists, go see this by Juan Cole.
Big Dog thinks you should vote for the candidate of hope, and beware of the candidate of fear.
Let's see, the Clintons rake in $109 million in the last seven years, the McCains are worth hundreds of millions and own eight houses, but it's Barack Obama who is the elitist? When was the last time either of these other candidates actually went shopping, or had to buy their own health insurance?
And since when did Hillary become pro-gun?
Karl Rove's playbook is getting some overtime use here. Attack your opponent's strength.
A lot of this is going on because there's not much else happening in the campaign. The Media pundits have to fill all that time with something, so they drum up this "major" gaffe and talk endlessly about it, as if it means something.