Talking Points Memo: McCain Says No Need To Fear Obama, Calls On Supporters To Be “Respectful”

Talking Points Memo

McCain Says No Need To Fear Obama, Calls On Supporters To Be “Respectful”


After taking criticism for standing by for days while his supporters grew increasingly unhinged and hysterical, John McCain did the right thing today, telling his supporters that there’s no need to be “scared” of a president Obama and calling on them to be “respectful” towards him.

We have two videos for you from the same event. Here’s vid of McCain saying that you needn’t fear Obama: “He is a decent person, and a person that you do not have be scared as President of the United States”…

And here’s video of McCain calling for respect from his supporters…




by Carmen Van Kerckhove

Dear white voter,

Sorry, was that too direct? Sarah Palin loves calling you “Joe Six Pack” and “hockey mom.” Perhaps I too, should use one of 68 possible euphemisms to refer to you instead.

I want to ask you a simple question: Which candidate — McCain or Obama — do you think has a higher opinion of your character?

John McCain has spent the last couple of weeks asking ominously: “Who is the real Barack Obama?”

Sarah Palin hasn’t hesitated to supply an answer to this question. She declared at a Florida rally on Monday that Barack Obama “is not a man who sees America the way you and I see America. I’m afraid this is someone who sees America as imperfect enough to work with a former domestic terrorist who had targeted his own country.”

And as CNN’s Campbell Brown pointed out in her commentary Wednesday night, McCain surrogates have made a point of calling the Democratic candidate “BarackHussein Obama” at least twice this week.

The McCain campaign is doing its best to paint Obama as a shadowy Manchurian candidate who is un-American, unpatriotic, dangerous, sympathetic to terrorists, and possibly even a secret Muslim (needless to say, that’s a bad thing in their eyes).

That much is obvious.

But what does their strategy say about what they think of you, the white voter?

Judging from their messaging, they seem to be stereotyping white voters as closed-minded, paranoid, naive, xenophobic, and just a tad bit racist.

And they are certainly connecting successfully with people who match this profile.

At a New Mexico rally on Monday, McCain asked the crowd, “Who is the real Barack Obama?” A voice in the crowd yelled out, “A terrorist!”

When Palin delivered her stump speech berating Obama at the Florida rally on the same day, an audience member yelled, “Kill him!” Audience members then began shouting angrily at the reporters covering the event, one of them yelling racial slurs at an African-American camera man and telling him to “Sit down, boy.”

Do you bear any resemblance to these agitators? Probably not.

Do you fit the profile of the racist and xenophobic white voter? Probably not.

Then do you really want to support a candidate who thinks so little of you that his only strategy right now is to appeal to your basest human instincts of fear and hatred?

Media Matters: On Dobbs, radio host claimed HUD said “about 5 million illegal alien home mortgage loans … have gone bad,” but HUD reportedly says stat is bogus

Media Matters

On Dobbs, radio host claimed HUD said “about 5 million illegal alien home mortgage loans … have gone bad,” but HUD reportedly says stat is bogus

Summary: On Lou Dobbs Tonight, Roger Hedgecock claimed that the Department of Housing and Urban Development “was talking about 5 million illegal alien home mortgage loans that have gone bad.” But Hedgecock did not cite a source for the purported HUD statistic. In fact, an article published more than an hour before Lou Dobbs Tonight aired reported that HUD “says there is no basis to news reports that more than 5 million bad mortgages are held by illegal immigrants” and that “a HUD spokesman said his agency has no data showing the number of illegal immigrants holding foreclosed or bad mortgages.”

Talking Points Memo: Fox Poll: Nearly Two-Thirds Say Ayers Makes No Difference To Their Vote

Talking Points Memo

Fox Poll: Nearly Two-Thirds Say Ayers Makes No Difference To Their Vote

These numbers, buried in the internals of a new Fox News poll out today, are the first time a national poll has tried to gauge the impact of Barack Obama’s association with William Ayers. And the numbers are pretty bad for McCain:

Strikingly, the numbers are worse for McCain among independents: Only 29% say the Ayers association makes them less likely to vote for Obama, and more than twice as many — 64% — say it makes no difference. The data suggests that the vast majority of the respondents saying it makes them less likely to vote for Obama are Republicans, who probably wouldn’t have supported him anyway.

There has been some discussion of Barack Obama’s relationship with the former radical activist William Ayers. Because Ayers is linked to plots to bomb the Pentagon and the U.S. Capitol in the 1970s, and because Ayres recently said he wished he had done more, some people say Obama’s association with Ayers calls into question his judgment. Does Obama’s connection with Ayers make you less likely to vote for him for president or does it not really make a difference to your vote?

Less Likely 32%

No Difference 61%

A quick additional point on this. Obviously this attack isn’t really about Ayers; it’s about sowing vague doubts about Obama’s patriotism and background. Whether that dimension of the attack is working is harder to measure, and may not be perfectly reflected in the answers to direct pollster questions about Ayers. Still, the above numbers are striking.


WSJ Washington Wire: McCain Is Asked to Denounce Supporters’ Outbursts

WSJ Washington Wire

McCain Is Asked to Denounce Supporters’ Outbursts


A top labor leader released a statement today calling on John McCain and Sarah Palin to denounce a string of angry crowd outburst that have come to define the tone of the Republican campaign in recent days.

“In a world where unspeakable violence is too often promulgated by extremists, it is no small or trivial matter to call someone a terrorist–or to incite potentially dangerous individuals toward violence,” AFL-CIO PresidentJohn Sweeney said this afternoon.

At a Monday campaign event in Albuquerque, a male attendee shouted “Terrorist!” when McCain asked the rhetorical question, “Who is Barack Obama?” McCain did not respond to the outburst; it is unknown if he heard the man.

That same day at a Florida campaign event, an attendee shouted “Kill him!” when Palin was criticizing Obama for his ties to 1960s radical Bill Ayers. Other shouts of “traitor” and “treason” have peppered McCain and Palin stops in recent days.

Guests at recent McCain-Palin campaign events have also increased the frequency of using Obama’s middle name, Hussein, when referring to the Illinois senator. McCain earlier this year had condemned such tactics.

Angry name-calling has also been directed at one of Palin’s frequent targets—the mainstream media. The Washington Post reported that at the Clearwater, Fla., event Tuesday a supporter “shouted a racial epithet at an African American sound man for a network and told him, ‘Sit down, boy’” when the Alaska governor referred to her “less than successful interview with kinda mainstream media.”

A McCain spokesman also attacked Obama. “Barack Obama’s attacks on Americans who support John McCain reveal far more about him than they do about John McCain. It is clear that Barack Obama just doesn’t understand regular people and the issues they care about,” said Brian Rogers.

In his statement, Sweeney, who supports Obama, accused McCain and Palin of “walking a very thin line in pretending not to hear the hateful invectives spewed at their rallies” and he called on the Arizona senator to denounce such remarks in “the strongest possible terms.”

“Anything less puts McCain in the same camp as the racists and extremists who are bringing their angry rhetoric to his campaign events,” Sweeney said.


PajamasMedia: Roger Simon: Dangerous times ahead: racism in the blogosphere

PajamasMedia: Roger Simon

Dangerous times ahead: racism in the blogosphere

A post I wrote yesterday about Barack Obama generated a certain amount of heat and close to 200 comments, maybe more at this point.  A fair number of enraged supporters of the candidate started coming in Sunday night–whether by accident or design, it is unclear. But it’s not surprising.  We’re nearing the end of a bloody political campaign.  The atmosphere is certainly hot. Maybe it’s too hot.  As an example, one of the commenters, a certain Marcus, wrote:

Could you just simply say “I’m not going to vote for a nigger!” and get it over with it. All of these bogus guilt by association theories are ridiculous.

Wow… Does this Marcus really believe that?  I didn’t recognize his email address and he probably doesn’t come on my blog often (if ever), but still… His blanket accusation–I assume that’s what it is–that   commenters here oppose Barack Obama because of his skin color is… well… scary.  It augurs terribly for the national mood if McCain actually happens to win in November.

I would urge Marcus (and others like him) to consider that there may be reasons to oppose Barack Obama other than the color of his skin.  Voting for McCain doesn’t make you a racist. This goes beyond the obvious that there are plenty of Republican African American politicians from Michael Steele to Colin Powell who might easily win approval here to the more subtle point that a good number of readers on this blog are long past party politics of any sort and the imputation that we are racially biased is both ridiculous and an insult. It might even contain an element of projection.

Newsweek: The Moderate Voice: And So It All Comes Down to Ayers…

Newsweek: The Moderate Voice

And So It All Comes Down to Ayers…

As I have mentioned before and it is hardly a radical observation the McCain-Palin campaign is trying to shift the race away from the issues, and specifically the economy, and towards and an all-too-common Republican strategy. More specifically, what they want is for the race to be sort of culture war in microcosm: On one side are McCain the war hero POW and Palin the gun-slinging hockey mom. This is the real America, the Heartland, and McCain and Pallin are the outsiders and reformists fighting for the people against Washington, New York, and Hollywood. On the other side are Obama the the dangerous, uppity black guy with the imposing black wife and the Muslim middle name who hangs out with terrorists and Biden the consummate…