By Ben Cohen
It looks like the Obama campaign is finally getting the message when it comes to attacking John McCain. After McCain has been ripping off the 'Change' mantra for the past week, Obama's campaign David Plouffe finally said: “John McCain
jettisoned his message and his strategy. It is now about change. We’re
going to lean into that very, very hard.”
And about time too.
The Obama team has allowed the McCain campaign to control the nature of the campaign ever since Sarah Palin was announced as VP. They have mercilessly shifted attention away from serious issues and used slash and burn politics to smear Obama in the most heinous ways possible. Obama needs to come out swinging, and swinging HARD. I have no idea what Plouffe and team have planned (they have a reasonably good ad insinuating McCain is out of touch), but they need to do something like the following:
1. Ignore Sarah Palin as much as possible. She has no clue about foreign policy, she has no serious record, and she has no serious ideas. She is a gimmick there only to draw middle aged white women and Christians back into the Republican party, and therefore does not warrant any real attention. Let her keep speaking to the press, and she will fall on her face soon enough.
2. Repeat, repeat, repeat again that McCain is not an agent of change. Obama needs to say very clearly: "I have lost all respect for John McCain. He has continuously failed to live up to his reputation as a straight talker, and he has turned his back on everything he once believed him. Given his recent behavior, he is no longer worthy of our respect."
3. Obama must come out and say "The Republican party in its current form is finished. They are no longer relevant to national debate as they are clinging to ideas and policies that have failed in spectacular fashion. If McCain wants to have a serious debate, he will need to come up with some new ideas."
4. Employ the Clintons to smash McCain where it hurts. The Clintons know dirty politics, and are an even match for the Karl Roves of this world. Obama needs to offer Clinton a big role in his administration, and it should be announced soon. The Clintons know how to hit McCain, and they could be crucial in putting him on the back foot. Obama must make sure they are not unethical (they cannot pull the same stuff they did against him), but he can certainly give them a lot to play with.
5. Obama needs to stop being so nice when insulted. Rather than smile, repeat in his trust in the American people etc, Obama needs to say: "These attacks are outrageous, offensive and they must stop NOW."