There’s a lot of good news. And, we shouldn’t forget that voting is already underway. I’ve got my Oregon mail-in ballot, and will vote tonight.
What most impressed me was something I heard Cokie Roberts say on NPR yesterday: that the Obama campaign is the best-organized, most disciplined campaign she’s seen in her lifetime. And, she gasped, it was from (chaotic) DEMOCRATS!
Now, that carries some weight, since Cokie is to the political manor born: Her father was the late Hale Boggs, the legendary House power broker from Louisiana’s 2nd District, and Democratic House Majority Leader in 1972, when his plane vanished over Alaska. (The plane was never found.) He had been the lone dissenter from the Warren Commission’s report that Lee Harvey Oswald was the lone gunman, which has given rise to various conspiracy theories.
The point being that, coming from Boggs’ daughter, that’s some kind of testament to Obama’s campaign organization. (Whiney CBS reporters notwithstanding.)
Because here is the crux of the argument to undecided voters:
Do you want the country run for the next four years in the manner that McCain has run his campaign in the last four weeks? Or in the manner that Obama has run HIS campaign?
Since neither has “administrative” experience, we have to look at how they administer the campaign machinery that now attempts to win the election. And that’s no small potatoes. Obama has raised (according to Faux Nooz™) over half a billion dollars in contributions mostly from small contributors under $100. Literally, public financing of his campaign.
McCain, on the other hand, immediately went on the dole, got $84 million from the treasury, and complains that Obama has rejected public campaign financing.
But, running such large operations is surely an exercise in administration. And a harbinger of future governance, it seems apparent.
It’s just this sort of thing that the Pew Poll talks about today:
October 21, 2008
Growing Doubts About McCain’s Judgment, Age and Campaign Conduct
Obama’s Lead Widens: 52%-38%
Barack Obama’s lead over John McCain has steadily increased since mid-September, when the race was essentially even. Shortly after the first presidential debate on Sept. 26, Obama moved to a 49% to 42% lead; that margin inched up to 50% to 40% in a poll taken just after the second debate. Currently, Obama enjoys his widest margin yet over McCain among registered voters, at 52% to 38%. When the sample of voters is narrowed to those most likely to vote, Obama leads by 53% to 39%.
Obama’s strong showing in the current poll reflects greater confidence in the Democratic candidate personally. More voters see him as “well-qualified” and “down-to-earth” than did so a month ago. Obama also is inspiring more confidence on several key issues, including Iraq and terrorism, than he did before the debates. Most important, Obama now leads McCain as the candidate best able to improve economic conditions by a wider margin (53% to 32%).
Obama’s gains notwithstanding, a widespread loss of confidence in McCain appears to be the most significant factor in the race at this point. …
Vox populi, vox Dei.
Of course, the onslaught of sheer Rovian Horse Manure is about to start in earnest. Rumor has it that Jerome Corsi co-author of the original ‘Swiftboating’ book in 2004, and newly deported from Kenya, as World Nut Daily screeches, listing him as a “WorldNetDaily Senior Staff Reporter“) has stopped in the Virgin Islands and is returning with a sex scandal. Faux Nooz is screeching about a blurb in a 1997 Chicago paper (unearthed by a Rightie blogger and entered into the noise machine over the weekend), and hinting darkly that this proves the Obamas were in cahoots with William Ayers. The campaign is “rethinking” using the “Rev. Wright” card*, rationalizing it that it’s OK, because Rep. John Lewis compared the McCain rallies of late to the ugly George Wallace rallies of the 1960s. Etcetera. Palin’s sex scandal seems to have gone nowhere, interesting to note. (Of course, the Obama campaign doesn’t behave in that ugly-meme-pimping manner, so it’s understandable.)
Could the Wright Stuff be far behind? McCain declared it off limits this past spring. But top aide Rick Davis said over the weekend that Congressman John Lewis’s remarks criticizing McCain/Palin rallies could put Rev. Wright back on the table. And the sand is slipping through the hour glass.]
The McCain campaign appears to be an organization in name only, fracturing in internecine finger-pointing and throwing mud at an even more frenetic pace (if such can be imagined) than they already have. And, increasingly, it seems that they don’t care WHERE the mud lands: on them, on Obama, on Colin Powell, whoever; just slinging reflexively, like the twitching legs of a dead daddy longlegs.
If they stay true to form, Sarah Palin will figure out some way to smear Obama’s grandmother before the week is out.
Or, perhaps one of their surrogates will claim that she isn’t REALLY Obama’s grandmother, but is, in fact, a well-known former Communist agent, who defected from the KGB and now is in the Federal Witness Protection program, and eats fried panda bear meat for dinner.
At this point, it wouldn’t surprise me. Or anyone else, it seems.
Because, tellingly, faced with polling data that pretty well establishes beyond a shadow of a doubt that all this mudslinging is backfiring on them, the Rovian Campaign of McCain’s response is to redouble their efforts. I’d hate to see that thought process applied to Iraq and Afghanistan.
Oh, wait. I already have.
Time is short, and we need to focus without becoming nauseous in the next two weeks, and then we need to pay careful attention to the Bushies leaving office: pre-emptive strikes against back-door pardons, for instance. You can trust that they’ll be stuffing their metaphorical carpetbags with regulatory silverware and towels on the way out the back door.
But America looks more promising than it has since before the Impeachment, Constitution-wise, at least.
And that’s a good thing.
So let’s get out there and put the pedal to the metal. Time is short and the stakes are high.
Today also marks the 2,001st day since the declaration of “Mission Accomplished” in Iraq by George W. Bush from the deck of the carrier U.S.S. Abraham Lincoln.