to a supporter "These guys are the most crooked, you know, lying group I've ever seen. It's scary," apparently referring to the Bush administration. I'm tired of hearing it already. It didn't surprise me, or disappoint me, since I knew how he has smeared others in the past for his own political advantage. Vodkapundit
is all over this. The AP reports
that Kerry's spokesman says he was talking about his "Republican critics in general. 'The Republicans have launched the most personal, crooked, deceitful attacks over the last four years," Wade said. 'He's a Democrat who fights back.'" This echos Josh Marshall, so it must really be part of their talking points memos. The problem is that they either can't tell the difference between valid criticism and debate and "personal, crooked, deceitful attacks," or they don't care. (Probably the latter.)
Think about the train of sophistry: First, Bush points to Kerry's anti-war activism and his voting record in the Senate. Second, you interpret that as an attack on Kerry's patriotism (?!) Third, work up a righteous indignation over the slur to your patriotism. And four, you call it dirty, crooked, personal and deceitful.
This explains the hysterical things the Democrats are all saying. I can only hope that the media advantage they're given by the likes of Peter Beinart, Paul Krugman and Josh Marshall, as well has groups like MoveOn.org
running illegal ads attacking Bush. You can count on them continuing to do so until the FEC actual establishes its new regulations
. I thought when Congress passed the McCain-Feingold law that they must have had some scheme in mind to get around it, because the Democrats just can't raise the kind of hard money that the Republicans can. They can raise wads from Hollywood lefties and eccentric Billionaires, but the whole point of the law was to pinch off this kind of thing. I remember how in 1996 Clinton violated all kind of fundraising laws and people from his campaign were reported to have said that they were willing to do so because after you've won, it doesn't matter. So the FEC passed new rules, and seeks and gets an injunction against these '527' groups. They'll just appeal and keep on violating the law as it works its way through the courts. Of course, if they do, Republican groups won't sit by and watch. It'll get awfully ugly.
Update: This might explain
the desperate measures they are willing to take.