Diary

+5.9 in the RCP polling average, and Obama wants to bring up the Keating Five.

I’m sure that there’s a great strategy here. Or tactics. Hey, if Obama doesn’t feel the need to know the difference, why should I? (Via Hot Air Headlines)

Exclusive: Obama to hit McCain on Keating Five

Sen. Barack Obama (D-Ill.) on Monday will launch a multimedia campaign to draw attention to the involvement of Sen. John McCain (R-Ariz.) in the “Keating Five” savings-and-loan scandal of 1989-91, which blemished McCain’s public image and set him on his course as a self-styled reformer.

Retaliating for what it calls McCain’s “guilt-by-association” tactics, the Obama campaign is e-mailing millions of supporters a link to a website, KeatingEconomics.com, which will have a 13-minute documentary on the scandal beginning at noon Eastern time on Monday. The overnight e-mails urge recipients to pass the link on to friends.

Yeah. The Politico is kind of wondering about this one themselves, given the above – and the fact that they made sure to include this bit:

“The story was complicated, but the press found a tag line that simplified it. McCain and four other senators with ties to Keating were dubbed ‘the Keating Five.’ The label stuck, imputing to all the same degree of guilt even though it soon became evident that at least two, McCain and former astronaut John Glenn of Ohio, were far less culpable, if they were culpable at all.”

Now, you can have yourself a good time discussing the Keating Five case – preferably, somewhere else; nothing personal, but if we wanted to read what your candidate wanted you to parrot we’d subscribe to his mailing list – but you have to wonder why. It’s clearly in reaction to Ayers, which is… interesting, isn’t it? It’s… well, if you’re me, you can call it “petulant:” but if you’re a bit less partisan I think that “incongruous” is acceptable. This doesn’t fit the persona.

It also doesn’t really fit the Democratic narrative of the campaign, either. You don’t play with fire like this when you’re six ahead in the polls. And this is playing with fire: K5 is old, it’s been long since analyzed to a fare-thee-well, we all know the counters to it, and bringing it up encourages escalation – and we have more things to escalate with, as the entire right half of the blogosphere will point out to you at the drop of a hat. All of which makes it kind of odd that we’re hearing this now. I could see it if the race was tied.

So, did a nerve actually get hit? Not so much Ayers himself, but what the question of his involvement with Obama implies – which is that somebody is demonstrating that she’s not particularly impressed by Barack Obama? Is somebody having a fit of pique?

But that’s just layman psychology. Question withdrawn.

Moe Lane