Tuesday, February 19, 2008

Obama = Bush?

File this under "If Mr. Obama is the Democratic nominee".

There has been a lot of talk in the last 48 hours about the RNC's plan to take on Barack Obama in a general election.

And, having taken a quick glance at the material, it looks fairly straightforward.

Barack Obama = inexperienced & untested & far left.

Which is absolutely fair game.

But there is an interesting twist on the "Obama = inexperienced & untested" message that the RNC (and other official Republican organs) won't go anywhere near.

A messaging twist that presents a potential opportunity for outside-the-box thinking Republican independent expenditures.

That is: Barack Obama = inexperienced & untested = George Bush 1999 = We all know how that turned out.

Crazy? Maybe, but...

The general election is only about electoral math. Period.

We are assuming (trying not to make an ass out of you or me) that there will be between 8 and 16 battleground states in the 2008 general.

We are also assuming that both Obama and McCain, when all is said and done, will be able to turn-out their base.

Which leaves the battleground state swing voters as pretty much the end all and be all (per usual).

Swing voters who haven't had a kind word to say about the current President since about 5 winters ago (but who are not, as of yet, totally sold on Obama).

Knowing this, the Democrats (official organs and independent expenditures) are going to do everything they can to label John McCain's candidacy "a 3rd Bush term".

The Democrats should be effective with this line of messaging.

However, Republicans may blunt this line of Democratic attack with swing voters in the battleground states if they can tie the inexperience of George Bush '00 to the inexperience of Barack Obama '08.

In other words, both sides get a taste of Bush.

It will take a dynamite independent expenditure program running a well targeted direct mail program, a lot of air cover (read: money) and no fear of ticking off the Bushies.

But that sale is possible. And should at least muddy up the waters enough so that the Democrats don't get a free first pass at the swing voters in the crucial battleground states.

Especially because swing voters are not going to be asked to couple Obama with Bush and then vote for a Romney or a Huckabee.

Swing voters are being asked to couple Obama with Bush and then vote for maverick (and mature) John McCain.

Who has one hell of a plan to combat global warming, have you heard?