Clinton Continues Negative Campaign Over Nonsense

When Hillary Clinton hasn’t been pandering to fear or fabricating arguments that Obama, and not her, has been engaged in negative campaigning, she’s been resorting to all sorts of other nonsense. Last week her campaign concentrated on distorting Obama’s comment in San Francisco, falsely claiming he was insulting small town voters. Today the morning news concentrated on her latest attack on Obama for saying that all three of the current candidates would be better than Bush:

“Senator Obama said today that John McCain would be better for the country than George Bush,” Mrs. Clinton said. “Now, Senator McCain is a real American patriot who has served our country with distinction. But Senator McCain would follow the same failed policies that have been so wrong for our country the last seven years. Senator McCain thinks it’s O.K. to keep our troops in Iraq for another 100 years. Is that better than George Bush?”

Obama had said:

“You have a real choice in this election. Either Democrat would be better than John McCain – and all three of us would be better than George Bush,” Mr. Obama said. “But what you have to ask yourself is, who has the chance to actually, really change things in a fundamental way?”

Obama’s campaign later backtracked on this:

Obama spokesman Bill Burton said: “It’s hard to imagine a president doing a worse job than President Bush but one thing is clear, John McCain wants to do his best to emulate Bush’s failed economic and foreign policies and even his divisive political tactics.”

Perhaps there is no reason to say anything good about the opposition, but saying someone is not as bad as George Bush hardly means they would be an acceptable president. George Bush will go down in history as one of the worst presidents of all time and odds are the next president won’t be as bad, even if a Republican. McCain is certain to distance himself from Bush during the general election campaign and it will be necessary to campaign against McCain’s own faults and not against George Bush.

McCain very well might not be as bad as Bush. While he shares many of his faults, at least McCain is against torture (even if inconsistent when it comes to voting), is more willing to admit that global warming exists (although we don’t know if he will actually do anything more than Bush), and doesn’t get along with the religious right as Bush does (although he sure does pander to them).

I don’t really care all that much if someone wants to say that McCain is not as bad as Bush, or if they believe he is as bad. We won’t really know unless we are stuck with him as president. Regardless of whether McCain is as bad as Bush, this is a nonsense political issue. Whatever Obama said about this has zero meaning in terms of deciding upon who to vote for. However, the manner in which Hillary Clinton has tried to turn this into a major campaign issue only highlights once again why we need an end to her type of politics. It’s the final day before a major primary and the morning news concentrated on this attack from Clinton. Doesn’t she have any better final messages to voters with regards to reasons to vote for her?

Steve Benen also points out that it has been Hillary Clinton who not only has been campaigning by saying something he objects to far more than saying that McCain is not as bad as Bush:

Because it seems to me the single most troubling thing the Clinton campaign has done all year was praise John McCain for having the experience necessary to be president, for passing the “commander-in-chief threshold,” for being a “moderate,” and even for being right about global warming.

Who’s been cheering on John McCain?

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