"Nobody thinks that Bush and McCain have a real answer to the challenges we face. So what they're going to try to do is make you scared of me," Obama said. "You know, he's not patriotic enough, he's got a funny name, you know, he doesn't look like all those other presidents on the dollar bills."The way things are going Obama might be able to charge racial discrimination on himself before it's all over.
It's tempting to say this is a first in presidential politics but is there really any doubt Jackson or Sharpton would have used it had they come as far? The first here is that Obama's the first to effectively pull it off without sounding obvious. Actually the real first in this campaign is the media's overt bias towards one candidate, but that's another post.
As Obama says, they'll keep hitting him as "risky" because frankly, he is risky based on his experience and past associations and visions for losing wars. What team Obama is trying to do is remove the legitimate criticism by associating it with his name and skin color in an effort to immunize himself from all white opponents. He did likewise with Hillary and it worked.
It's tempting to suggest a bold strategy for McCain--perhaps a commercial showing Obama talking about fearmongering then flash to Jeremiah, Phleger and Moss, ending with Obama calling his own grandmother 'typical'. At the very end McCain would pop on and say "stop making this campaign about race and come out to debate me at some townhall meetings, you little snot". OK, maybe without the last part.
He could also make a commercial calling attention to the savior's own fearmongering by his attempts to tie McCain to Karl Rove while pointing out how a do-nothing Congress has ignored gas prices to focus on getting Rove on some trumped up charge to help prop up Obama's fearmongering. Too bad McCain can't use the biggest fearmongering card of all--global warming. C'est la vie. Or oops, Merci beaucoup.
There are of course pitfalls. Once McCain even utters the word race he runs the risk of making the whole thing about race because of his own race. So perhaps it's not time for action. McCain's true friend right now might be Obama's hubris and overconfidence fueled by a throng of adoring media snapping pictures. It's bound to be a house of 'cards'.