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Sarah Palin emerged as John McCain's chief attack dog at the weekend with an incendiary attack on Barack Obama as an unpatriotic man who would "pal around with terrorists".

In remarks seen to have a racial edge, she said of Mr Obama: "This is not a man who sees America as you and I see America. We see America as a force for good in this world. We see America as a force for exceptionalism ... Our opponents see America as imperfect enough to pal around with terrorists who would bomb their own country."

The "friend of a terrorist" allegation appeared to have scant basis in fact, but succeeded in grabbing the news agenda: the New York Times' article Mrs Palin referred in fact concluded that Mr Obama and Ayers had never been close, despite both living in Chicago and occasionally moving in similar circles. Read more.
 

Question: Will Palin's allegation backfire or are there lingering doubts about Obama?

Comments

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orwhoeveriam wrote:
Oct. 6th, 2008 11:29 am (UTC)
Undecided voters won't be swayed. People who were already going to vote for them will believe the allegation. Obama supporters will cite her association with Alaskan seccessionists, but that won't have much of an impact either, I don't think.
alatoo wrote:
Oct. 7th, 2008 06:42 am (UTC)
"If you tell a lie big enough and keep repeating it, people will eventually come to believe it." (Joseph Goebbels, minister of Nazi Propaganda.)
Don't you think that McCain's campaign is using the same approach, and sometimes, it works?
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heavenly_action wrote:
Oct. 6th, 2008 12:00 pm (UTC)
I think it will only pump up those that dislike Obama anyway. I don't think the ads will be vote changers. However, I would like to see someone put up the stats for how well Bush was doing at this time last election. Me and my ex have an argument going where I point out all the problems with McCain and the attack ads and how he stands in the polls and my ex keeps saying it doesn't matter. Bush did horrrible in the debates and all the same problems but his attack ads worked. He thinks that pundits are wrong that McCain is still very much in the race. I agree that it is still very much a tight race but that Bush was doing much better in the game than McCain is now. Anyone have the numbers?
montanaisaleg wrote:
Oct. 6th, 2008 08:09 pm (UTC)
I look at electoral-vote.com for stuff like that. Here's this day 4 years ago. The predicted winner moved back and forth quite a bit over the last month, but you can click the "Previous Report" and "Next Report" links on that page and see for yourself. Basically, you're right that bush was doing much better then than mccain is now. Anyone who made strong predictions about who was going to win at this point 4 years ago was just guessing. Today, saying that obama will probably win isn't such a crazy assertion.
(no subject) - takemetothesea - Oct. 7th, 2008 08:12 pm (UTC) Expand
batbuds wrote:
Oct. 6th, 2008 12:04 pm (UTC)
First, I have seen and read news coverage of this event. I still do not detect racism... I interpret it more as the 'common' vs 'elite' comparison/arguement... race was never indicated, nor should it be. As a matter of fact, it should never be an issue from either camp again!

Second, yes there are still doubts about Obama, there are doubts about McCain... the race is simply getting ugly as we turn onto the political equivalent of the final lap...

I don't think there will be a backfire; Americans are getting immune to political mud slinging... it is what it is.
credendovides wrote:
Oct. 6th, 2008 12:10 pm (UTC)
I'm not sure I see the race, but I don't see it as common vs elite either. I see it more along the lines of taking a red marker and drawing horns on an Obama poster. And, IMO, it comes out about as silly in the end. It is what would be referred to as FUD and nothing more.
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tilfinningunni wrote:
Oct. 6th, 2008 12:53 pm (UTC)
I think it makes Sarah Palin look like a fool. To quote a political analyst on MSNBC, it is "the last vestige of a dying campaign." which is true. It shows the McCain campaign's last desperation-- as if resorting to an ugly campaign after promising not to, and using Sarah Palin as a tactic (much to the disrespect of her) wasn't.
manatees wrote:
Oct. 6th, 2008 12:59 pm (UTC)
Ugh, what an idiot Sarah Palin is. As if the interview with Katie Couric wasn't enough!
aimees wrote:
Oct. 6th, 2008 07:50 pm (UTC)
LOL as if ANY of her interviews weren't enough :p
tyskkvinna wrote:
Oct. 6th, 2008 01:04 pm (UTC)
My respect of the Republican campaign keeps slipping. I don't WANT to lose respect for them, but they're making it pretty hard to keep it. I hope the egg ends up on their face this time.
jeffxandra wrote:
Oct. 6th, 2008 01:06 pm (UTC)
Considering her husband is definitely a member of a secessionist organization, the Alaskan Independence Party, and she has appeared at and spoken to their convention, is this really the angle she wants to take?
hybridartifacts wrote:
Oct. 7th, 2008 05:49 pm (UTC)
How does that fit with 'One nation, under God, indivisible'? I would have thought that means she doesn't believe in at least part of the pledge. I wont admit to much knowledge of the pledge (though I lived in the USA for a year in my teens and stood respectfully while others made it) but it does seem a little at odds with it and I would have thought that might make her a highly questionable choice for a VP.
freak2760 wrote:
Oct. 6th, 2008 01:16 pm (UTC)
I doubt the allegation will backfire. It may change a few minds but those voters were most likely not going to vote for him in the first place.

Personally, I think its a legitimate issue that needs to be raised.

You have an unrepentant Vietnam era domestic terrorist helping launch, with the use of his living room, Obama's political career. I don't see that as "occasionally moving in similar circles."

Here's a link: http://townhall.com/Columnists/GuyBenson/2008/04/24/debunking_obamas_ayers_fact_sheet

mefan wrote:
Oct. 6th, 2008 09:57 pm (UTC)
Could you have linked to source w/more bias? LOL. Come back w/a story that includes the same debunking done by a neutral news agency and then I might buy into it. I do agree w/you that it should be properly investigated, however. Just like Sarah Palin's husband's activities w/the Alaskan secessionists should be investigated. I mean if we're going to accuse Obama of endorsing terrorism w/such flimsy and trivial evidence then I suppose it's perfectly reasonable to accuse Palin of endorsing treason by supporting her husband's association w/the AIP.

(And in case it wasn't obvious, I think both claims are nothing but bullshit).
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tnrkitect wrote:
Oct. 6th, 2008 01:42 pm (UTC)
If the media wish to examine the association of Obama with Ayers, why do they not show their "unbiased reporting skills" and start talking about McCain's close association with and praise of G. Gordon Liddy, who was convicted of and imprisoned for breaking the law?

As Media Matters for America has noted, Liddy served four and a half years in prison in connection with his conviction for his role in the Watergate break-in and the break-in at the office of the psychiatrist of Daniel Ellsberg, the military analyst who leaked the Pentagon Papers. Liddy has acknowledged preparing to kill someone during the Ellsberg break-in "if necessary"; plotting to murder journalist Jack Anderson; plotting with a "gangland figure" to murder Howard Hunt to stop him from cooperating with investigators; plotting to firebomb the Brookings Institution; and plotting to kidnap "leftist guerillas" at the 1972 Republican National Convention -- a plan he outlined to the Nixon administration using terminology borrowed from the Nazis. (The murder, firebombing, and kidnapping plots were never carried out; the break-ins were.) During the 1990s, Liddy reportedly instructed his radio audience on multiple occasions on how to shoot Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, and Firearms agents and also reportedly said he had named his shooting targets after Bill and Hillary Clinton.

Liddy has donated $5,000 to McCain's campaigns since 1998, including $1,000 in February 2008. In addition, McCain has appeared on Liddy's radio show during the presidential campaign, including as recently as May. An online video labeled "John McCain On The G. Gordon Liddy Show 11/8/07" includes a discussion between Liddy and McCain, whom Liddy described as an "old friend." During the segment, McCain praised Liddy's "adherence to the principles and philosophies that keep our nation great," said he was "proud" of Liddy, and said that "it's always a pleasure for me to come on your program."


(quoted from here: http://mediamatters.org/items/200810040004 Original article has links to sources and items)
resistdeath wrote:
Oct. 6th, 2008 02:28 pm (UTC)
This is startling. Thank you for sharing.
grace_om wrote:
Oct. 6th, 2008 01:50 pm (UTC)
Will Palin's allegation backfire or are there lingering doubts about Obama?

Both.

It's hard to say what the net effect will be. Republicans have done well with this kind of strategy in the past (McCain should know, as an experienced victim of the Bush machine), though not usually carried out by the candidates themselves. In this case, I do think it is a deliberate attempt to arouse racist sentiments in undecided voters. The wording is very carefully crafted.

OTOH, people are sick and tired of this kind of mud-slinging. It is a last resort of a campaign that has nothing of substance to offer. It's especially ironic coming from a team that claims they're going to "change the culture of Washington" and "reach across the aisle."
pennyann wrote:
Oct. 6th, 2008 02:03 pm (UTC)
I think Palin's allegation will backfire in that it will make their campaign look desperate (because it is). They promised to keep this a clean fight, and so far they haven't even come close to that. If what she was saying was true, instead of being stretched to the very limits of credibility (her claims are all totally exaggerated)... it might be more effective. Instead they take a fact and stretch it so far as to be unrecognizable. Kind of like when she says she said, "Thanks but no thanks for that bridge to nowhere". Well, when you say it after it has already been killed in the congress (and they did that, not her even though she always says "we killed it")... that makes it technically true that you said that perhaps, but meaningless in that it was no longer being offered. "No thanks for that bridge to nowhere that you aren't going to give me anyway" would have been more accurate.

All of that said, I think there are lingering doubts about Obama. Though the only people I see doubting him are right leaning conservatives who aren't going to vote for him anyway. All the garbage about "He's a Muslim" or "He's a terrorist who is going to take over and destroy the country" or "He won't put his hand over his heart during the National Anthem and he only occasionally wears his flag pin on his lapel" is just nonsense to make him seem like a scary person and a risky choice.

I wish nonsense like this would always blow up in someone's face and make them look like the ass that they are for even saying it. Unfortunately, some people believe anything they hear a politician say, if they are inclined to do so because they like the person or support the person spewing the garbage. Then it takes hold in those people's minds and they just repeat it over and over as if it is fact. It should backfire because it is just sad and wrong to pull this kind of stuff. Unfortunately it probably won't backfire with nearly the force it should (enough force to knock them out of the race almost entirely).
credendovides wrote:
Oct. 7th, 2008 12:29 am (UTC)
Even reading the responses in this community, I've seen a number of responses that basically say "Wow that is disturbing and I am concerned, do you have more information?" Despite the request for more information, a lot of people seem to be taking these things at face value.

My first response when faced with something troubling is to find out for myself. What I've found most the time is only a mere grain of truth dressed up and twisted around so much it's barely recognizable.
holy_outlaw wrote:
Oct. 6th, 2008 02:35 pm (UTC)
I go by the old adage the you are judged by the company you keep.Bill Ayers is a convicted terrorist.Barack has been his friend for many years.

Is Palin mudslinging?Maybe.But consider,Ayers threw a party at his home for Obama when Obama announced his first run for political office.Plus,in 2001, Barack Obama was serving on the board of the Woods Foundation with none other than Bill Ayers,who stated at that time that he had "no regrets" about his actions in the Weather Underground. In fact, he wished he could do more.

Where was the media when this was first brought about?Keeping it under the rug.

People need to know what they are electing.Obama is a socialist in every sense.I got a flyer from the Michigan Democratic commitee,where Obama was outlining his energy plan.He is offering a rebate to families from the taxes on windfall profits made by big oil.Wealth redistribution.The way Karl Marx served it up.

You want to lose your remaining freedoms and call one another "Comrade"?
Then Vote for Obama.
grace_om wrote:
Oct. 6th, 2008 02:59 pm (UTC)
People need to know what they are electing.Obama is a socialist in every sense.I got a flyer from the Michigan Democratic commitee,where Obama was outlining his energy plan.He is offering a rebate to families from the taxes on windfall profits made by big oil.Wealth redistribution.The way Karl Marx served it up.

Do you think he might have gotten the idea from Alaska?

http://www.tax.alaska.gov/programs/documentviewer/viewer.aspx?255

It works very well for them!
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euchreman wrote:
Oct. 6th, 2008 02:45 pm (UTC)
Palin's comment
I think that Palin is a little too late. Others have tried to paint a portrait of Obama's questionable ties and it didn't do any good. This current one is about as flimsy as they come. There may still be doubt about Obama but I don't think that she accomplished anything.

...People who live in glass houses shouldn't cast stones.....
aimees wrote:
Oct. 6th, 2008 07:39 pm (UTC)
Re: Palin's comment
I agree - she didn't accomplish anything in my book!
daemonchadeau wrote:
Oct. 6th, 2008 02:56 pm (UTC)
This is desperation at its finest.

McCain is seeing his back against the wall, so the GOP spin machine is once again playing the "one nation under fear" card that Karl Rove played so well.

But I don't think Americans will make that same mistake of buying that again.
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