Thursday, November 06, 2008
It was bad enough when the news media made its relentless attacks against Sarah Palin. That was to be expected for an industry that picked Barack Obama as its golden boy and took every opportunity to destroy anybody in Obama's way. They started with Hillary Clinton then moved on to McCain and slavered over the chance to dig up every speck of dust in Palin's life.
Now it's McCain's campaign staff trashing her. Tom Flannery's excellent column yesterday looked into the question of McCain blame.
The John McCain campaign didn't wait for Tuesday's decisive loss to start pinning the blame for the shellacking on Sarah Palin. It started weeks earlier with campaign operatives putting out the word that she was a "diva," saying she was difficult to work with and confirming reports of a rift with McCain. Not to mention the leaking of a $150,000 bill for clothing that Palin neither picked out nor paid for, but for which she was saddled with the entirety of the blame.
Talk about the "Straight Talk Express" going off the rails!
The media elites who have demonized and demeaned Palin in every way imaginable will surely run with the McCain campaign's spin and milk it for all it's worth. The storyline will likely lead the election postmortem coverage for quite some time to come. Before long, hardly anyone will remember how energized the Republican National Convention – and the Republican base nationally – was by the Palin selection, or how McCain emerged from that convention (thanks to her stunning performance) with a solid lead over Obama.
Then came the Wall Street financial crisis, and rather than side with the people – who abhorred the Washington bailout and opposed it with unbridled intensity – McCain instead made himself the public face of that bailout by suspending his campaign and rushing back to Washington to try to hammer out the deal. With that, his poll numbers collapsed.
McCain probably couldn't help himself. This is what he'd been doing his entire career – working with Washington liberals to push through horrendous legislation or reach arranged "compromises" favorable to the liberal agenda and then taking credit for being courageous enough to "do the right thing."
This time, McCain alienated not only conservatives across the country (as he had done repeatedly on a host of issues through the years – immigration, campaign finance reform, drilling, judges, etc.) but the vast majority of the voting public – and he never recovered from it. Hundreds of national opinion polls taken from that point forward showed Obama in the lead, often by double digits, as did most polls in the key swing states.
Flannery details multiple ways McCain hamstrung his own campaign, then he gives us this:
He also failed to answer the constant questions about Palin's supposed lack of experience. McCain should have been making the point that, however inexperienced she might be, she nevertheless has far more executive experience than Obama. As Newt Gingrich wrote earlier this week: "[I]t is revealing that no national network TV interviewer asked Gov. Sarah Palin about her experiences as governor; her experience writing an $11 billion state budget; her experience leading the 29,000 employees of the Alaskan state government; her experience negotiating a big deal with ExxonMobil, Shell, BP and the rest of Big Oil; her success in giving the money from that negotiation to the people of Alaska as a $1,300 tax cut for every man, woman and child in the state; or her experience in negotiating a natural-gas pipeline that is the biggest civil-construction project in North America, and which three former governors failed to get done."
Perhaps they were just too busy asking her "gotcha" questions in an attempt to reduce her in the eyes of the American people and impress their fellow media elites with their usefulness to the Obama campaign they all so enthusiastically abetted.
To that end, expect Democrats and the media to make the case in the weeks ahead that the McCain campaign was done in by his decision to nominate such a woefully unqualified running mate. In short, Sarah-bashing will be raised to something of an art form as she is blamed for everything that went wrong.
Still, the fact remains that when all of the votes were tabulated last night, John McCain was left lying in a bed that he himself had made. And if he wants to know who cost him this election, all he has to do is look in the mirror.
Michelle Malkin also has an excellent post on The McCain Campaign's Classless Cowards.
The anonymous trashing of Sarah Palin by blabbermouth McCain aides who are leaking to Fox News is disgusting. Absolutely disgusting.
Allah’s got the vid clip of a report citing unnamed McCain staffers accusing Palin of lacking, in Carl Cameron’s words, “knowledgeability.” More slime here. And here.
At least all the Hollywood and Manhattan Palin-haters were willing to sign their names and put their faces on their attacks.