So what’s Team Obama’s take on being turned into a pinata last night?  CNN’s Political Ticker has the details.

“To be very honest with you, I don’t think he expected gingerly treatment,” Axelrod told reporters on the campaign plane. “I think he understands that they don’t really have a record to run on and this is what politicians do when they don’t have a record to run on.”

“She’s a skilled politician. As she proved last night she’s deft at going on the attack,” said Axelrod. “For someone who makes the point that she’s not from Washington, she looks very much like she’d fit in very well there. When you see how she brings these attacks, it all felt very familiar to Americans who are used to this kind of thing from Washington.”

As for the repeated attacks from speakers like Rudy Giuliani and Palin on the community organizing chapter of his life Obama often touts, Axelrod said he thought everyday people viewed the position as real work.

“It may not pay the millions of dollars Rudy gets for shilling for pharma but it’s significant work,” said Axelrod.

This is actually something I have yet to really talk about or even ponder.  I’ve already discussed that I think that the vicious tone of the Republican convention isn’t going to do them any long term favors, even if party energizing nets them an expected post convention bounce.

But the other thing to think about is if the Republicans can knock Obama off of his game.  This week, Obama has been largely out of the national spotlight, content to work battleground states while the Republicans have their moment.  But one thing that this quick hit from Axelrod reminds us is that Obama still remains virtually unflappable.

If they can get Obama to play defense as opposed to the political jiu jitsu that has served him well thus far, that would be a major coup for the McCain/Palin ticket, but Axelrod’s comments lead me to believe they are ready to turn the attacks right back at the Republicans.

Meanwhile, it’s important to note, I think, that after two days of the Republican convention, Obama’s lead still remains solid over McCain.  We won’t know until tomorrow at the very earliest if the blood letting last night will help close that gap for McCain, but the simple fact that thus far Republicans aren’t seeing even a modicum of a bounce should be indicative of problems for McCain.

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