Wednesday, October 22, 2008

Specter of Bin Laden Favors McCain


Newsweek's Jonathan Alter thinks a re-emergence of Osama bin Laden during the last two weeks of the presidential campaign may not hurt Sen. Barack Obama as it did to Sen. John Kerry in 2004.

Alter puts forth the idea Kerry made an error in failing to push rhetoric about bin Laden four years ago, while Obama, in his opinion, has not.
Seven years after 9/11, the country is in a different place, and the Obama campaign would respond to a bin Laden tape in a different way. For two years, Obama has been reminding audiences that the Bush administration has failed to catch bin Laden.
On an Oct. 9 episode of the Charlie Rose program, journalists including David Brooks and the loopy Mark Halperin did an extreme tap dance around the notion McCain's only hope in this election was either a traumatic terrorist attack or the meddling of al Qaeda media attack.

Aside from poking around military intervention on the Pakistani border, Obama has not sufficiently formed the requisite narrative that al Qaeda is still running around the globe active and poised to attack, nor as Alter says reminded voters that bin Laden has not been apprehended by the Republican president.

Like Kerry, Obama is very much vulnerable to intervention from the caves of rocky Afghanistan.
Obama's campaign has to be praying the media arm of al Qaeda recently ran out of VHS and eight-track tapes.
The problem has more to do with the media upheaval in the day of 24-hour news cycles than the perception of Obama's inexperiences versus McCain's relative experience.

The numbers may show Obama with a fairly strong lead nationally as well as a multitude of possible electoral equations due to tightening races in battleground states, yet certain important demographics are trending his way, but by no means solid.

White males, although reported today in a poll passed a majority for Obama, could be easily swayed back to McCain if bin Laden butts into the campaign. Women, could also latch onto the Straight Talk Express if an atmosphere of danger arises.

The most tenuous factor could be voters who reluctantly support Obama despite racial prejudices who merely needed a reason to vote for the old white man.

Like it or not, too many voters, possibly your neighbors and the guy down at The Home Depot, believe or suspect Obama to be a stealth Muslim. For this reason, Obama's campaign has to be praying the media arm of al Qaeda recently ran out of VHS and eight-track tapes.

Above all, a change in conversation, whatever it may be, favors McCain.

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