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Tonight I’ll be talking presidential campaign politics. All of my regular co-hosts are out of town. I may have someone to yammer with me, but otherwise if you don’t call in I’ll be conducting my own on-air filibuster for the whole hour (I’m bringing water just in case). That’s at 7:00 p.m. on KMUD.
We (or I) will be discussing Veepstakes, the ground Obama has lost in recent weeks, the potential impact of third party candidates, etc.
Addendum: It turns out that the McCains own 12 houses.
Obama’s people are hitting hard on this one, and on McCain’s comment last weekend defining a “rich” person as someone who makes 5 million a year. Presumably if you bring in a mere 4 million you’re a working stiff.
It’s probably Obama’s best tack. Better I think than Andrew Sullivan’s attack yesterday. Granted, it’s not an attack on McCain personally, but the subtlety is liable to be missed by most. It’s an attack on the Bush/McCain torture policy, and it’s a clever argument. I just don’t think anyone should go there. Even if it’s not sanctioned by Obama, and it probably isn’t, it’s the type of tack which could hurt him anyway. Sullivan argues that under Bush’s definition of torture, McCain wasn’t tortured as a POW. Playing with fire. We saw what happened to General Wes Clark for saying that being shot down in combat does not qualify one to be president. General Clark did not denigrate McCain’s military service in any way, but the media just isn’t that astute.
Meanwhile, all indications are to Joe Biden as VP. But all indications have often been wrong. Nothing is slipping out of the Obama camp yet.
And Corsi’s book is getting slammed by a handful of conservatives.
Addendum: It’s hard to believe McCain pulled this stunt, but apparently he’s got a weapon and he’s ready to use it. From Talking Points Memo:
The McCain campaign is road-testing a new argument in responding to Obama’s criticism of his number-of-houses gaffe, an approach the McCain camp has never tried before: The houses gaffe doesn’t matter because … he was a POW!
“This is a guy who lived in one house for five and a half years — in prison,” spokesman Brian Rogers told the Washington Post.
For those of you who haven’t kept track, the McCain campaign just recently cited McCain’s POW years in explaining away the Miss Buffalo Chip gaffe, and in dealing with the allegation that he broke the rules and listened in on Barack Obama during the Rick Warren forum.
Also, Rogers made sure to play the anti-intellectual card: “In terms of who’s an elitist, I think people have made a judgment that John McCain is not an arugula-eating, pointy headed professor-type based on his life story.”
So is this going to be the response from here on in any time McCain runs into some criticism?
Second addendum: McCain’s bad day.
Third addendum: McCain’s hitting back, and just before the Democratic Convention where the Democrats will literally be lining up to take McCain down. It’s going to get ugly.
This one’s precious.
McCain strategists hope that Obama’s brass knuckles punch doesn’t work. “Americans don’t like this class warfare stuff,” the official said. They aspire to be rich, the official said. They don’t aspire to eat arugala or hang out with celebrities.
Newsflash: Americans do respond to class politics when there’s a major recession and certain companies are making record profits. And by the way, the arugala remark is “class warfare” at its most vulgar.
And why are they picking on arugala? Pick on lattes!
Fourth addendum: Time has two GOP sources who say McCain has settled on Mitt Romney for VP.
Obama, meanwhile, says he’s made his decision, but he’s mum. It’ll be announced on Saturday morning probably. The talking heads are saying Biden.
Why is Obama waiting? A suggestion from the Fix, blame McCain:
One other interesting side note about the housing story: If Obama’s campaign had planned to roll out their vice presidential pick at any point today, that announcement is likely to be put on hold. Why? The campaign believes the story about McCain’s many houses is political gold and they won’t want to step on it with a veep announcement that would immediately change the day’s storyline.
I recently heard an interesting twist of analysis of the Second District race from Estelle’s camp. The spin goes as follows. The June election was weighted conservative. Low turnout. Come November, we’ll be in a hot presidential race. High turnout. More Democrats. Estelle is the only Democrat.
So more voters expand the whole pie to Estelle’s benefit, and Joanna, whose name won’t be on the ballot itself, draws Fortuna votes away from Clif. Estelle does so well in a heavier turnout outlying areas and draws a few more in Fortuna, she slips by both of them.
It sounded better when explained to me, and I’m probably missing a step in the logic. But even with a higher turnout, I just don’t see the math. Estelle is actually going to lose some of her June support from those who absolutely don’t want Johanna to win. Clif went toe to toe with Roger – in Roger’s strongholds. And he did it with the least amount of money, and with local punditry writing him off early on (including rumors of a privately commissioned poll in which Clif was “not even a factor”). Something about his campaign quietly resonated. I’ll be writing more about that in the near future.
Anyway, time to kick things off again. How about some early scenario predictions? Will the presidential race cavalry carry Estelle to the finish? Will she lose significant numbers of Sohum votes to Clif? Can a write-in candidacy win this race?