Posted by: David Kiley on August 21, 2008
The Obama campaign finally put together a striking ad retort after weeks of allowing the McCain campaign to set the ad agenda and keep Obama on the defensive. McCain’s ad squad kicked it off in July with the now infamous Paris Hilton ad, which boxed Obama as a “celebrity,” and sought to make him look like a light-weight.
But Senator McCain handed the Obama campaign the equivalent of John Kerry’s “I voted for it before I voted against it” sound-bite four years ago.
Asked how many houses he and his wife owned by an interviewer, McCain couldn’t come up with the answer, and said his staff would have to get back to the reporter. Huh?
This is obvious red-meat to the Obama campaign, and too good to let go. The ad:
The effect of the ad is too make the first real cut at McCain exposing the Senator as a super-rich guy, not so much the brave POW. But it also works on a second level the Obama campaign had better be prepared to defend: reminding voters of Mccain’s almost 72 years. The whole ad and issue gives the Obama campaign Rovian deniability that it is exploiting McCain’s age and his habit of confusing facts and countries when he’s on the stump. But it’s there.
Obama’s ad efforts, though they have moved more pointed in their attacks on McCain in the last ten days, have simply not been as well executed as the McCain ads. This one, though, may start to change the scoreboard.
Not kowing how many houses you own is just the sort of event, like John Edwards’ expensive haircut, Kerry’s soundbite hell and Dan Quayle’s spelling shortcomings, which will hang around kitchen tables until November.