Thursday, September 11, 2008


There's plenty of chatter out there that Obama's press conference yesterday, during which he said to McCain, the media and the rest of the country, "Enough!" wasn't, well, enough. People think he should be doing more and that every moment he doesn't attack this ridiculousness head on, he loses.

Every time I heard that I wondered what more he is supposed to do. He has the will of the country on his side, and he should continue to talk about issues that matter to people.

Maybe there's a way to do both. Maybe he can blast McCain-Palin for their petty politics while simultaneously explaining that their policies are wrong for America. And even better, I think he can send out surrogates to do it for him. He should send out an army of elected women from around the country to put an end to this nonsense. Jennifer Granholm, Dianne Feinstein, Kathleen Sebelius, Janet Napolitano, Christine Gregoire and, yes, Hillary Clinton should be out there explaining to voters that Sarah Palin is anti-women.

Their message is simple. They have all worked for decades for causes that are important to women. Palin has not. To the contrary, Palin opposes abortion, even in the instance of rape and thinks Roe v. Wade should be overturned (as opposed to leaving the decisions to the states, which many conservatives support). She is against equal pay for equal work. And when she was the mayor of Wasilla, her town had a law that charged rape victims between $500 and $1,200 "for the costs of the forensic medical examinations used to gather evidence," according to USA Today.

Polls out this week show a rise for McCain on the backs of women. White women supported Obama, 50-42 in an ABC/Washington Post poll before the Republican Convention. Now, McCain is ahead in that group, 53-41. My hunch is that result is based solely on the lipstick. If they knew about her policies on issues pertaining to women, those numbers would move back in Obama's favor.
(Photo courtsey: Getty)

Wednesday, September 10, 2008

Unift to serve

In light of the pig-lipstick ad (which has now been pulled from YouTube, per CBS's request) and the education smear ad that came from the McCain campaign, there is discussion on the blogosphere that McCain is no longer morally fit to be considered for the office of president.

It's an argument I've been making for a while now. It won't be news to the readers of this blog, but McCain is not the maverick he portrays. It is now clear to me that this is not just about policy, as the Obama campaign suggests. There is an argument to made that, despite the votes in lockstep with the Bush administration, McCain has separated himself from his ideological party on key issues, ranging from the environment to corruption to wasteful spending. But for a while now, he has embraced the partisan politics that have divided this country. He frequently says he would rather lose an election than lose a war, yet he continues to run the sleazy, mind-numbing kind of campaign that, despite his stump speech claims, is only about winning elections. 

Andrew Sullivan has a great post on just how morally defunct McCain has become. I urge you to read the entire post, but here's a snippet:

And when he had the chance to engage in a real and substantive debate against the most talented politician of the next generation in a fall campaign where vital issues are at stake, what did McCain do? He began his general campaign with a series of grotesque, trivial and absurd MTV-style attacks on Obama's virtues and implied disgusting things about his opponent's patriotism.

And then, because he could see he was going to lose, ten days ago, he threw caution to the wind and with no vetting whatsoever, picked a woman who, by her decision to endure her own eight-month pregnancy of a Down Syndrome child in public, that he was going to reignite the culture war as a last stand against Obama. That's all that is happening right now: a massive bump in the enthusiasm of the Christianist base. This is pure Rove.


If you haven't heard already, you will soon enough: Obama ran off a long list of how McCain's policy is the same as Bush's and said, "That’s not change. That’s just calling something the same thing something different. You know you can put lipstick on a pig, but it’s still a pig. You know you can wrap an old fish in a piece of paper called change, it’s still going to stink after eight years. We’ve had enough of the same old thing." The McCain camp and the media are drooling over this. It's on top of Drudge and Huffington Post. Scarborough hasn't stopped yapping about it this morning.

The McCain response was obvious. The campaign has released a web ad on the comments.

Anything that could possibly be portrayed as sexist will be. But the media's response is pathetic. Scarborough and Andrea Mitchell are airing the web ad -- in other words an ad the McCain campaign has not paid for, but is relying on the media to distribute -- and both have declared that this is working for McCain. Both have decided that everyone will be more sympathetic to McCain-Palin because of it. There's no evidence of it, mind you.

And one more thing. CNN, to its credit, was quick to note in its story that McCain used the same phrase in reference to Hillary Clinton -- in MAY! From the CNN report:

"In Iowa last October, McCain drew comparisons between Hillary Clinton's current healthcare plan and the one she championed in 1993: 'I think they put some lipstick on the pig, but it's still a pig.' He used roughly the same line in May, after effectively claiming the Republican nomination."

No mention of that by Scarborough.