Rapid Response

The Obama campaign did not waste much time at all hitting the president back in regards to his foul comments delivered in Israel.

In fact, Obama took to task both President Bush, and Senator McCain.  Interestingly, the way he hits back continues to feed an initial observation of mine regarding Obama in that every time he gets attacked, he gets a free shot to feed his core message of a new kind of politics.

In a statement, Sen. Barack Obama, D-Ill., shot across the bow: “It is sad that President Bush would use a speech to the Knesset on the 6Oth anniversary of Israel’s independence to launch a false political attack. It is time to turn the page on eight years of policies that have strengthened Iran and failed to secure America or our ally Israel. Instead of tough talk and no action, we need to do what Kennedy, Nixon and Reagan did and use all elements of American power — including tough, principled, and direct diplomacy – to pressure countries like Iran and Syria. George Bush knows that I have never supported engagement with terrorists, and the President’s extraordinary politicization of foreign policy and the politics of fear do nothing to secure the American people or our stalwart ally Israel.”

The real stinger is saved for McCain, though:

“It is the height of hypocrisy for John McCain to deliver a lofty speech about civility and bipartisanship in the morning and then embrace George Bush’s disgraceful political attack in the afternoon. Instead of delivering meaningful change, John McCain wants to continue George Bush’s irresponsible and failed Iran policy by refusing to engage in tough, direct diplomacy like Presidents from Kennedy to Reagan have done,” Obama spokesman Tommy Vietor said.

As an added bonus, I just wanted to highlight Senator Biden as well.  Look, some people don’t like them, I know there may be a writer or two here at Comments that don’t hold him in the highest regard, but it’s hard not to have a little affection for the guy when he hauls off and blasts somebody:

“This is bullshit, this is malarkey. This is outrageous, for the president of the United States to go to a foreign country, to sit in the Knesset … and make this kind of ridiculous statement.”

Ayuh.  Bullshit indeed.


2 Responses to “Rapid Response”

  1. Stranger says:

    I’ve been saying for a long time that David Axelrod has significantly improved the ‘War Room’ model that worked so well for Clinton in ’92.

    Hell, he may have perfected it. Nobody on the Dem side in recent memory has been so effective and timely in responding to smears.

    Give it two months after the primaries, and McCain will be making charges that Obama is really a Martian sent to conquer Earth – because by that time, O and Axelrod will have gutted the tried-and-true GOP smears like so many fish.

  2. I think so. You know, I’ve written on this in the past, but it bears repeating.

    Obama’s and Axelrod’s chief strategy is risky, but if it’s done right and it works, it’s damn near invincible.

    The fact is, people say they don’t like negative campaigning, but obviously negative campaigning still works, and I think the Obama strategem is essentially a process that is put forth to make sure it doesn’t work.

    We’ve seen it in action time and again; first you refute the claime, and then you attack the attacker for playing dirty politics.

    Very simple, but effective, and you can use it just about anytime and in any way you want to. If you really press the issue, you can paint an opponent as a negative campaigner even if they really aren’t campaigning that negatively.

    The true brilliance of it, though, is simply that you tie up your opponent. You take away their weapons, which means that they are left to keep looking for new weapons that you also take away.

    Just dropping a negative ad doesn’t work, you see, but persisting with a negative narrative is what is necessary. If you pound the same point over and over again, it will eventually hit home, but what Obama’s strategy does is force the opponent to keep changing the narrative, and when you keep changing the narrative, you lose message cohesion and get mired in dissonance.

    Meanwhile, Obama continues to reinforce his own core message everytime an attack is launched.

    The risk, of course, is if any of the attacks actually land and stick, but one thing I think that has been made clear is that Obama has been effective at not letting them stick.

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