Four new polls are out today, and they all confirm that Obama has received a significant bounce from the convention, even after the Palin announcement.
Rasmussen: O49, M46
USA Today/Gallup: O50, M43
CBS News: O48, M40
The whole picture will become more clear once the Republicans are done with their convention, but right now, all evidence points to the DNC being an overwhelming success for Senator Obama
The Palin statement today included the sentence:
We’re proud of Bristol’s decision to have her baby and even prouder to become grandparents.
If Sarah Palin and John McCain had their way, that decision would have already been made for her. Making a decision implies choice, no? Just askin’…
Very good, Senator Obama:
Politico’s Carrie Budoff Brown reports: At a press avail in Monroe, Mich., Barack Obama on Palin: “Back off these kinds of stories.”
“I have said before and I will repeat again: People’s families are off limits,” Obama said. “And people’s children are especially off-limits. This shouldn’t be part of politics. It has no relevance to Gov. Palin’s performance as a governor and/or her potential performance as a vice president. So I would strongly urge people to back off these kinds of stories. You know my mother had me when she was 18 and how a family deals with issues and teenage children, that shouldn’t be a topic of our politics.”
Audio of interview here. He also vows to fire any campaign staffer that stokes this story, and obviously isn’t happy with the implication his campaign had anything to do with the story:
“I am offended by that statement. There is no evidence at all that any of this involved us,” he said. “Our people were not involved in any way in this, and they will not be. And if I thought there was somebody in my campaign who was involved in something like that, they would be fired.”
To pivot to Obama v. McCain news, Gallup has their new numbers out which show Obama getting enticingly close to that 50% mark.
As I’ve noted before, the Obama camp hates tracking polls, but they serve their purpose as far as media narrative goes. And I’m about as sick of hearing about she-who-shall-not-be-named as anyone, so here is some news to take the focus off that.
A quick statement – there is a lot of news coming out today about Palin’s family. I don’t think Democrats need to touch it now and should stay far away from it. As First Read points out, McCain is using the distraction of Hurricane Gustav to dump all the bad news out in the open, and cleverly, it probably will get lost in the news mix.
My recommendation: a surrogate waits a couple weeks, pulls out all the varying pieces of info that have been coming out about Sarah Palin, and putw the question squarely to the media: “How carefully did McCain make this decision to put someone a heartbeat away from the Presidency? This question needs to be examined.”
Remember, as Greg points out it’s not about Palin. It’s about McCain’s judgment. So don’t talk about specific things going on with her family, just point out that there has been a lot of stuff coming out and it begs the question: how carefully did McCain make this judgment?
UPDATE: I’m sure Dems will stay away from this, but the Republicans WANT to tie the Dems to it, to unleash a backlash from attacking a 17-year-old. Let’s not fall into their cynical trap.
I understand how unlikely this is, and how incredibly tough it would be for a lifelong, prominent Republican of Powell’s stature to endorse a Democrat, but really, does he have a choice now?:
Powell’s adviser said the vice presidential picks for both candidates would be a major factor in his decision, both for the quality of each man’s running mate and for what sort of “signal that choice sends about the character and judgment of the candidate.” (Aug 13th)
General Powell has no choice. He’s concerned about the 21st Century, restoring our image of the world, and the VP choice and what it says about the character and judgment of the candidate? In the style of Keith Olbermann, “Sir, you have an obligation to your country, sir.”
I hope and pray the Obama camp is aggressively courting him now that the facts are in.
In the last 20 years or so, the traditional media has reduced the VP selection process to a silly parlor game free of any substance and entirely focused on the political implications of the pick. The analysis is focused on “the ticket,” and how the two of candidates fit together. For example, much of the Palin analysis says that she’ll help McCain appeal to blue-collar, working class areas because of her life story (and by the way, I agree). And this obsession on how the pieces fit together translates from pundits to delegates to the candidates themselves. In the course of doing so, everyone, led by the press, has lost the one simple question that matters with a VP choice.
From Andrew Halcro, who was one of the Republicans who ran against Palin in 2006.
The campaign of John McCain has sent a staff of eight people into Alaska to conduct background checks and vetting on Governor Sarah Palin.
Word is they have have eight rooms reserved at a Wasilla hotel.
Absolutely stunning. It is clear they did next to no vetting whatsoever:
The McCain campaign has gone to great lengths to present the selection of Sarah Palin as one made after a careful, meticulous vetting process. But evidence continues to suggest that the Arizona Republican made his VP choice with surprising haste.
On Saturday, a Democrat tasked with opposition research contacted the Huffington Post with this piece of information: as of this weekend, the McCain campaign had not gone through old newspaper articles from the Valley Frontiersman, Palin’s hometown newspaper.
How does he know? The paper’s (massive) archives are not online. And when he went to research past content, he was told he was the first to inquire.
“No one else had requested access before,” said the source. “It’s unbelievable. We were the only people to do that, which means the McCain camp didn’t.”
McCain’s judgment on this pick is so outrageous that it should disqualify him from being within 50 miles of the White House. They should revoke his ability to even tour the place.