Obama Extends Lead In Backlash Against McCain’s Dishonest Attacks

John McCain and his supporters have been avoiding discussion of the issues and instead concentrating on a variety of smears. Lately include tremendous exaggerations of Obama’s connections to William Ayers and to Acorn, along with a rather dishonest spin on the problems Acorn encounters in voter registration. Other McCain ads distort Obama’s record and misrepresent what he has said. What these attacks have in common, beyond their dishonesty, is that they are so transparently nonsensical that only the grossly uninformed and partisans who are out of touch with reality would be expected to fall for them. It is encouraging to find that the latest polls show that this is the case as Obama shows a strong lead over McCain.

Gallup’s daily tracking poll continues to show some daily noise but Tuesday showed a nine point lead, with some recent polls showing a lead of eleven. Gallup further breaks this down to a six or ten point lead depending upon what method is used to predict who will actually turn out to vote. The poll which is attracting the most interest today is a New York Times/CBS News poll which shows Obama to be up by fourteen, or a twelve point lead when third party candidates are included. While the McCain campaign is in denial over this result, when the three point margin of error is taken into consideration it only shows a mildly greater lead than other polls and could possibly even be the first sign of an expanding lead for Obama. It is certainly possible that McCain will narrow the gap as many losing candidates have in the past. Current projections also show Obama with over 350 electoral votes (such as here and here) and while McCain might take back some red states, it will be difficult for him to prevent an Obama victory.

Among the findings in the New York Times/CBS News poll is that of the 21% whose views of McCain have worsened, a quarter say it’s because of his pick of Sarah Palin. Even Bush strategist Matthew Dowd has recently been condemning the McCain campaign for being willing to put the country at risk by choosing Sarah Palin as his running mate. On the somewhat distressing side, the poll also shows that there is a small by still meaningful number who will apparently believe anything. Fourteen percent of Republicans and thirteen percent of independents believe that Obama is a Muslim.

More encouraging is that for the most part McCain’s attacks on Obama have been harmful to McCain:

After several weeks in which the McCain campaign sought to tie Mr. Obama to William Ayers, a founder of the Weather Underground terrorism group, 64 percent of voters said that they had either read or heard something about the subject. But a majority said they were not bothered by Mr. Obama’s background or past associations. Several people said in follow-up interviews that they felt that Mr. McCain’s attacks on Mr. Obama were too rooted in the past, or too unconnected to the nation’s major problems.

“What bothers me is that McCain initially talked about running a campaign on issues and I want to hear him talk about the issues,” said Flavio Lorenzoni, a 59-year-old independent from Manalapan, N.J. “But we’re being constantly bombarded with attacks that aren’t relevant to making a decision about what direction McCain would take the country. McCain hasn’t addressed the real issues. He’s only touched on them very narrowly. This is a time when we need to address issues much more clearly than they ever have been in the past.”

With McCain’s strategy of basing his campaign on smears and ignoring the issues backfiring, it remains difficult to see how McCain can get back into the race. The negative impression he has created by his dishonest and erratic behavior during the campaign so far is unlikely to be erased should he finally change his campaign to deal with the issues. Even if the campaign should honestly deal with the issues it is doubtful this could help McCain considering how he is on the wrong side of most of the issues.

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3 Comments

  1. 1
    Angellight says:

    Why is McCain being Deceitful about the fact that William Ayers’ educational foundation was funded by Republicans, not Democrats, Republicans, who are now endorsing him?
    The Annenbergs who are Republicans, Bankrolled William Ayers with $50 million dollars.  However, Walter and Leonore Annenberg weren’t just giving money to the educational foundation started by William Ayers, they were also giving hundreds of thousands of dollars to the Republican National Committee and various other Republican groups, as well as to a whole host of Republican candidates, including the following:
    George W. Bush $4000 –   Mitt Romney $5000
    Strom Thurmond $1000 – Fred Thompson $500
    Rick Santorum $3000
    There are questions that are not being asked or answered such as –why would billionaire Republican philanthropists give millions of dollars to a program that was started by William Ayers, if he is such a scary figure and unrepentant?   Why would George W., Mitt Romney, Fred Thompson and all those other Republicans accept money from the people who were funding this William Ayers-associated group? And, why won’t McCain discuss these connections between the Republican Party and Ayers?”
    Recently, McCain campaign put out a press release bragging about the fact that  Leonore Annenberg has endorsed him for president. The very Leonore Annenberg who bankrolled William Ayers with millions of dollars is now backing McCain!
    Lastly, Republican Arnold Weber who served on the board of the CAC with Barack, who worked with William Ayers in the 90’s, has also donated at least $1000 to the McCain campaign. So you see, McCain is accepting money from associates of William Ayers, and so far has not given the money back.  Why won’t McCain come clean about these facts?  Why is he being deceitful about this?
    http://www.republicansforobama.org/?q=node/3027

  2. 2
    JPMOTU says:

    Regardless of who funded the project, republican or democrat, it was your boy Barack that is involved with Ayers up to his ears.

  3. 3
    Ron Chusid says:

    Up to his ears???  All the investigation into this has only demonstrated that Obama’s connections to Ayers were trivial. Sitting on committees along with Republicans is hardly a connection which could be describe as being up to his ears.

    A far stronger case can be made connecting John McCain to Ayers than Obama once we follow the money trail.

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