Obama’s Current Plan of Attack Won’t Work – Tilly
September 1, 2008 1 Comment
In my last post I gave three reasons why Palin makes a great VP pick. The last I gave, that Palin strengthens the McCain campaign’s message of reform, might well be her strongest asset to the ticket. That combined with McCain’s independent reputation defines the ticket as one that will bring change. Before Palin was named as the running-mate, Obama had been desperately trying to define a John McCain presidency as “four more years of Bush”. While this was already a hard message to sale because McCain has over 20 years of being a Senator who refused to toe the Republican party line, with his pick of Palin, this attempt by Obama becomes impossible.
Obama’s first ad after the announcement of Palin is more of the same attacks. It paints McCain as a Bush follower. What is the most bizarre thing about the ad is the it shows pictures of McCain picking this Washington outsider known for getting rid of corruption in her state and then saying McCain is more of the same. While the narrator in the ad certainly attempts to make the point that McCain is like Bush, the pictures do not. The very first clip you see is that of McCain with Palin!!! Mr. Obama, dont you know people dont see Palin as more of the same??
McCain and Palin are taking further steps this week to show they will be a different administration than the Bush administration. They have traveled to Mississippi in the wake of the coming hurricane. McCain also cancelled all but “essential opening day activities” at the Republican Convention. Gustav reminds the American public of Bush’s failings with Katrina. This hurricane, which many may believe hurts the Republicans, will actually help them. McCain/Palin are showing the American people a response unlike Bush’s. This strengthens the idea that McCain is different than Bush.
If Obama wants to stop McCain’s current momentum, he must change his approach to attacking him. This is going to be hard because virtually his whole campaign has been based on “change”. But he must start making the case to why his policy ideas are better than McCain’s. He must present a convincing case to the American people that his policies are going to work. Just asking Americans to vote for him because he will bring “change” wont work because Americans believe McCain will bring change as well. It will come down which candidate they believe present ideas that will actually work.
Of course, as a conservative, I think Obama’s policy ideas are ridiculous proposals that will never work. But if Obama wants to win, he cant keep his current attack strategy. I dont think Obama will give up on trying to define McCain as Bush. He knows if he is successful in doing so, he wins in a landside. But, unfortunately for Obama, McCain’s reputation is too established and his pick of a Washington outsider only strengthens this reputation.