Monday, October 13, 2008

The McCain campaign

The big news today is that, in trying to fire up some campaign workers, he said he'd whip Barack Obama's you-know-what at the next debate.
I don't see it as a big deal. He was just trying to fire up his supporters.
Remember when Barack Obama a couple of weeks ago told his supporters to "get in the face" of those not backing the Democrats?
A larger problem here though, for the McCain campaign, remains their message.
The McCain team doesn't have a consistent one. One day they talk about Obama's association with Bill Ayers. The next day they don't. One day they talk about abortion. The next day they don't.
Unless and until McCain makes a clear, consistent message that differentiates him from Senator Obama, this race won't be changed, and McCain will lose. But there's still time...

UPDATE: Jim Geraghty over at NRO I think agrees with me, and adds a couple of very valuable points:

" seems McCain — and notice I say the candidate, not the campaign — is more or less assenting to the MSM’s view of what is in bounds and what is out of bounds in terms of relevance and good taste in this campaign. The MSM thinks that Ayers, Wright, Rezko, the theme of the “Celebrity” ad, ACORN voter fraud efforts, the Democrats' blind eye to the mismanagement of Fannie and Freddie, and basically any other story that might actually harm Obama's standing in the polls is out of bounds. The second problem is that it’s tough to dabble in the controversial topics. (And I understand the argument that many voters only pay attention in the final month, but when you bring up Ayers, etc. with four or five weeks to go, when you're behind, it is a near-guarantee that the strategy will be painted as a desperation move.) You either have to insist that the whole lot of Obama's associates — Ayers, Dohrn, Wright, Meeks, Pfleger, Rezko, Nadhmi Auchi, Rashid Khalidi, Alexi Giannoulias — are revealing about the candidate's character, judgment, and worthy of discussion, and defend that argument full-throatedly... or you can't go there. You certainly can't back down in the face of media criticism; that back-and-forth implicitly validates the media criticism."