Friday, October 17, 2008

Shorter Broder: Bush Beat McCain, Obama Did Nothing

It's easy for Broder to dump on Bush now, now that he's essentially irrelevant:

The public distemper with George Bush is so pervasive now that nearly all the candidates running on the Republican ticket -- not just McCain but senators and representatives who thought they were well ahead -- have seen their poll numbers turn sickly.

During the debate, when Obama accused McCain of offering nothing but a continuation of Bush's policies, McCain protested, "I am not President Bush. If you wanted to run against President Bush, you should have run four years ago. I'm going to give a new direction to this economy in this country."

But his protestations are in vain. So far as the voters I've interviewed are concerned, there has been only one economic policy for the past eight years, and it bears Bush's name. Even now, with the bankruptcy of that policy, the Republican White House is calling the signals.

It's a bit late to admit Bush's failings, old man. He's been a terrible President for seven years and nine months; you conveniently overlooked that fact until seeing it would show McCain in a better light, and Obama in a worse one:
Given the near-impossibility of McCain's position, Obama should be enjoying a near-waltz through every possible challenge.

McCain's real opponents in this race are the economic collapse and the shattered political reputation Bush has inflicted on Republicans.

But Obama has done his part by avoiding any errors and presenting a minimal target to the opposition.

McCain's lost because he's been fighting against history. Obama's won by doing nothing. Just call him Fortinbras.

I think we've heard this meme before, but mostly from hacks like Gerson. Looks like Broder's finding his level.

In a fairly detailed look at Wednesday night's debate, Broder managed to say nothing about what was, for many commentators besides yours truly, the defining moment - the abortion discussion. How do you say:
Despite the fact that he was playing on the Democrats' turf, McCain made a spirited case for himself on all these subjects.
when McCain basically looked like he wanted to bite through somebody's jugular over the idea of a "health of the mother" exception to a late-term abortion ban? Yeah, it was 'spirited,' alright - in about the same way that Ozzy Osbourne biting the head off a bat was 'spirited.'

And the notion that Obama has an easy ride in this race? I don't think so. In order to win this thing, Obama still has to be the least angry, the least aggrieved, black man in America. Like Jackie Robinson in that first incredibly difficult season, he's had to maintain his composure at all times, under all circumstances. He makes it look so easy. But that doesn't mean it didn't take a lot of work to make that happen.

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