When John Kerry tried to run on his Vietnam record, the Swift Boat Veterans for Truth ran three TV ads that forced him admit his lies and exaggerations during the war, as well as his two-faced political opportunism as a protestor after the war.
So Kerry whined and demanded that he be judged on the issues. Last night at the Republican Convention, Zell Miller and Vice President Cheney granted his wish and exposed him as a soft-on-defense liberal.
Today (amid the smears), Kerry’s campaign is desperately talking economics, economics, economics. The campaign just blew $50 million on a TV ad buy here in Ohio. But that can’t save them either. Tonight, President Bush will hammer Kerry on economic issues, contrasting Bush’s tax cuts, Bush’s emphasis on the ownership society, and the current robust economy with Kerry’s gloom-and-doom pronouncements of economic woe and Kerry’s record of tax hikes and profligate spending.
And now Kerry can’t double back and appeal to the voters based on his Vietnam medals, because he’s cut off from retreat: the SwiftVets have just released a fourth TV ad that uses Kerry’s own televised words to illustrate his contempt for his own medals. This guy’s got nothing left to run on.
John Kerry’s a roach in a room without hiding places … and his opponents just flipped on the lights.
UPDATE: I neglected to mention that the SwiftVets wrote an open letter to John Kerry offering to end their ad campaign if he’ll do four things. Don’t hold your breath.
UPDATE 2: Hugh Hewitt would probably agree with my cockroach analogy.
If Zell’s speech had been the disaster that the old media left and the new media left are proclaiming it to be, why will radio row on the center-right be replaying it for 60 days? The chorus of people who are complaining that Zell was too harsh are violating one of the number one rules of politics — never let them see you bleed. Zell spoke directly to the widdespread appearance of Moore’s Disease within the Democratic Party leadership, and sharply underscored the undeniable 20-year record of anti-defense votes cast by Kerry. The attamept to turn a serious challenge to Kerry’s national security credentials into a sort of Pat Buchanan “culture war” speech of 1992 is very amusing and a clear signal that the Dems are scared to death that the Zell remarks will be played again and again before 11/2.
President Bush is shaking his can of rhetorical Raid right now, and tonight the spraying begins.