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All Hands on Dreck

October 6, 2008

As the election draws nigh and Obama stretches his lead to the magic double digit number (theoretically negating Bradley/Gantt), the McCain team prepares to launch negative ads, as the Campaign 101 manual tells you to do if you are losing. We don’t call it “negative campaigning” anymore, we’re merely making “important contrasts between candidates,” in this case, making guilt by association attacks on Obama for having sat next to some mustache twirling evil men at some time in his life.

The attack ads promise to address the Tony Rezko and Will Ayers matters that circulated early this year. Both attacks failed to gain any traction during the primaries, even with Rezko’s criminal trial ending while the campaign was heating up.

The big one, the one we’ve all been anticipating, the Rev. Wright story, will NOT be a part of that final call strategy according to McCain staffers. The Noble Maverick has vetoed bringing up that issue.

Fine. However, that’s all part of the game. Let no one be fooled. Here’s how it will play. The press will ask as often as they possibly can, “Why are you not addressing the Rev. Wright connection, Senator?” Giving the Mav a chance to appear to be all gracious and what not, while his response is featured in split screen with footage of the Wright. Then some analysts will waste time wondering whether or not the Maverick campaign is making a big mistake by not bringing up the issue, while replaying more footage.

Yeah, sure outside agitators will likely spend some money on an ad featuring Wright in battleground states, but Mav doesn’t want those ads to be the story. He wants his act of nobility to be the story, even while he’s featuring an attack focused on associations even more tenuous than Wright.

So, don’t get all up in arms about McCain’s last chance play. Let it die on the vine. Instead, let’s reminisce like CL Smooth on 1991 and Charles Keating. While Obama’s plans to remind us all of McCain being one of the Keating Five can be considered a negative ad, you can’t get much more relevant than a scandal that caused the government to step in and bail out a financial institution. That makes the Keating infomercial all the more potent right now.

The McCain team probably realizes that the Keating link has more immediate currency than the Rezko/Ayers/Wright stuff but hey, they gotta do something, the Palin nomination was an epic FAIL. The campaign suspension was an epic FAIL. It’s the last gasp.

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