Strategy ’08

Obama vs. the other guy, 2008


The few remaining reality-based Republicans are waking up this morning with the same eerie feeling Democrats had four years ago.

Four years ago, the Democrats stupidly tried to “out-tough” the Bush administration. Reporting for duty?

I wanted to like it, I did. But a part of me knew then that it was the worst decision ever. Instead of challenging Bush on transparency, instead of making an argument for change, instead of running on the economy, we tried to take their issue and run with it. Dumb. Dumb. Dumb.

You can’t out-tough an administration that is dedicated to torture, to rendition, to pre-emptive war. Sorry.

So it was with much glee that I heard this last night, and read the headlines this morning: ‘Change Is Coming’

Change? This guy? It was as believable as the Kerry Salute. This is John McCain’s “Reporting for Duty” moment. He is now SCREWED.

Seriously? Change? This is what they want to do? Color me giddy.

McCain said his record demonstrates a dedication to remaking Washington and an instinct for putting the people’s interests over party loyalty. McCain has spent nearly 26 years in Congress and, at 72, would be the oldest president elected to a first term, but he presented himself as an agent of revival for a political system in disarray.

Yes, vote the old Washington insider for change.

Bring it.

It wasn’t just the Post that ran with that either. Check the Wall Street Journal – second paragraph.

The pledge, in a speech delivered to the closing night of his party’s national convention here, was designed to help him launch the fall campaign by reclaiming the image of an agent of change in a year when voters are clamoring for one — and at a time when his image as a maverick has been questioned.

More please.

New York Times? What’s your second paragraph?

Standing in the center of an arena here, surrounded by thousands of Republican delegates, Mr. McCain firmly signaled that he intended to seize the mantle of change Mr. Obama claimed in his own unlikely bid for his party’s nomination.

Guess what, John? You’ve been in Washington for almost three decades. You’re the problem, not the solution. And America knows this.

Just as the Kerry campaign thought he could somehow steal the “strong on defense” mantra from the Republicans with a salute, John McCain thinks he can fool America into thinking that an old insider can run as a “reform” candidate.

I’m not saying it’s over, I’m not saying we can rest on our laurels – it’s still going to be a hard fight. But the McCain campaign has seriously screwed itself here.

Thank god they weren’t paying attention in 2004.


September 5, 2008 - Posted by | Uncategorized | ,


  1. I think they’re hoping to put up Palin as the face of the ticket, and to that end I promise you more people watched her speech than McCain’s.

    Comment by dansac | September 5, 2008 | Reply

  2. Yeah, when the focus is on Palin, the Republicans like it, and when it’s on McCain, it kind of depresses them.

    I’d be on the lookout for TV ads exclusively featuring Governor Palin in battleground states.

    Comment by slinkerwink | September 5, 2008 | Reply

  3. This is off topic but I have a question.

    Re: “McCain pushed to increase his election coffers before he accepted the nomination yesterday. He is barred under campaign finance rules from fundraising once he accepts the nomination because he has opted to take $85m in public funding.”

    Does the above apply to veep as well?

    Palin: 30 Fund-Raisers in 60 Days: “Alaska Gov. Sarah Palin will appear at around 30 fund-raising events in the next two months leading up to Election Day – about one every two days on average, officials with Sen. John McCain’s presidential campaign said today.”

    Comment by EvilPoet | September 5, 2008 | Reply

  4. I also have a feeling that the media will want to make this a race between Obama and Palin because she’s a lot more appealing to cover and would generate ratings. The night she spoke drew about 37 million viewers, so television executives are looking at that, and then altering their coverage to keep those ratings in.

    I’m not quite so sure that Obama can keep the focus on John McCain with all the media attention focused on Palin and the “will Palin take away Obama’s female voters” narrative that’s bound to play.

    Comment by slinkerwink | September 5, 2008 | Reply

  5. Evil – any money that Palin raises for the general applies to the McCain limit. They’re sharing a ticket.

    Comment by zenbowl | September 5, 2008 | Reply

  6. Zenbowl – Thanks for the clarification, much apprecited.

    Comment by EvilPoet | September 6, 2008 | Reply

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