The SanityPrompt

This blog represents some small and occasional efforts to add a note of sanity to discussions of politics and policy. This blog best viewed with Internet Explorer @ 1024x768

Thursday, September 16, 2004

If I Was the Campaign Manager for Kerry Pt II

This is the ad I would run

9/11 Widow Kristin Breitweiser, on why she is supporting Kerry: "I've been very involved in the last three years, since my husband's death, with trying to get attention paid to the failures that occurred on 9/11. We fought to get the creation of the 9/11 Commission, a commission that the White House opposed. Once that commission was created, we fought to get proper funding, access to documents and individuals. We were fought by the White House on that. We fought to get an extension, and, again, we went up against the White House. It was a course of three years of battling with the same individuals that I voted in 2000 to put in office to lead my country" ("Capital Report," Sept. 14)

One of the things that Bush has done brilliantly has been to work at minimizing his opponent's strengths. This, of course, is all the work of Karl Rove. Both the book and documentary Bush's Brain make the case that Rove has a trademark of brashly going after his opponents' strong points. He did this with innuendoes about Ann Richards' sexual orientation and with the smear campaign against John McCain in South Carolina in 2000. And his hand is evident in the Swift Boat ads which work at neutralizing Kerry's advantage in his war biography. Those ads do not have to convince anyone that Kerry was a coward. They only have to confuse people about Kerry's presentation of his war biography. This takes his advantage on the issue away from him. He even becomes loathe to bring the matter up since to do so immediately invites reminders of those ads, allows reporters to remind voters about those ads in any story they do covering Kerry. This same strategy of Bush's is evident in recent ads on the health care issue in which he actually attacks Kerry. I think the word for this is Chutzpah.

What I love about the idea of an ad with 9/11 survivors is that it goes right to the heart of Bush's political strength and his main electoral advantage over Kerry. Democrats don't have to win this debate. But imagine if they could neutralize the Republican advantage by reminding people of the facts. The recent 9/11 report practically reads like a Kerry advertisement. Imagine an ad with a 9/11 survivor or widow reading excerpts from the report. Excerpts that expose how the administration stonewalled the 9/11 Commission. How Condoleeza Rice barred the main terrorism and Al Qaeda expert from National Security Council Briefings. How the administration essentially lied to the commission and pretended they were never told to watch out for hijacking plots from Al Qaeda -- when their own terrorism advisors wrote memos telling them this the summer before 9/11. How the administration wouldn't even share copies of those memos with the 9/11 Commission. Then of course there is the fact that the invasion of Iraq has made the nation less safe by radicalizing the Arab world further, bogging down our resources and attention in an unimportant part of the world while real problems in Iran, North Korea and Afghanistan go unattended. But why beat someone over the head with the facts?

Just my humble opinion.

1 Comments:

Yes but the record of obstruction and concealment is longer. Remember Cheney's secrecy on his oil energy advisors. Now we have the new intelligence estimate report in NY Times today which flatly contradicts all of Bush's stump speeches on Iraq.
It has been four years of secrecy, spin and lying. History can't match it. I hope your blog reaches the ears of Kerry II advisors to give them courage. Bring more on. Harkap

By Blogger H.M. Kaplan, at 10:03 AM  

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