June 6, 2008


McCain Sets Sights on the Democrats Who Voted for Clinton (Michael D. Shear and Jon Cohen, 6/06/08, Washington Post)

Republicans plan to describe Obama as an elitist from the Hyde Park section of Chicago, where liberal professors mingle in an academic world that is alien to most working-class voters. They plan to make sure Clinton's voters do not forget about Obama's comments that working-class people are bitter and cling to their guns and religion as a way of dealing with the economic uncertainty they face.

"The cling-to part about religion and guns is where the McCain campaign is going to hammer home on," said Kevin Madden, a GOP analyst who was the spokesman for former Massachusetts governor Mitt Romney's presidential bid.

In recent days, the Republican campaign has held focus groups in the Rust Belt and Appalachian states where Obama's messages of hope and change failed to translate into votes, including one session in Pittsburgh -- Obama lost in Pennsylvania to Clinton, and it will almost surely be a critical swing state in the fall. McCain advisers said they found a palpable unease with Obama among those groups.

The point, key Republican advisers said, is that Clinton's voters see more of themselves in McCain than they do in Obama. In recent weeks, McCain advisers have shared data with Republican activists backing up that contention, said one Republican strategist.

McCain's speech Tuesday night contained a direct appeal to Clinton's voters, calling her a "friend" and saying that her presidential campaign inspired his own daughters and "millions of women to believe there is no opportunity in this great country beyond their reach."

In addition, they say they will stress the areas where McCain's positions are different from Bush's. In his speech Tuesday, McCain went out of his way to highlight his belief in global warming, his opposition to Bush's energy bill and his criticisms of the conduct of the war.

"The American people didn't get to know me yesterday," he said. Speaking as much about Clinton's supporters as his own, he added: "They know I have a long record of bipartisan problem-solving. They've seen me put our country before any president -- before any party -- before any special interest -- before my own interest."

Posted by Orrin Judd at June 6, 2008 4:30 PM

"They've seen me put our country before any president -- before any party -- before any special interest -- before my own interest."

Killer line.

Posted by: Mikey at June 6, 2008 6:50 PM

I forgot the last part - 'because it's true'.

Posted by: Mikey at June 6, 2008 6:55 PM

Democrats think they'll turn into a pillar of salt if they vote for a Republican.

Posted by: erp at June 7, 2008 2:06 PM

Speaking of Hyde Park. From this, it sounds like the place hasn't changed much since I lived there 30 years ago. (I guess Changeā„¢ is just for everyone else.)

Posted by: Raoul Ortega at June 7, 2008 4:47 PM