In the excitement of last Thursday in putting together the Exxon-Obama logo (and thanks to the many fine folks who linked us!), we ended up failing to make one point.
Many others have made it in this case – that when Obama comes out guns blazing on trying to tie McCain to “big oil”, it is he, Obama, who has received more money from the likes of Exxon. And that when Obama comes out hammering McCain as wanting to continue the Bush energy policy as crafted by Cheney, it is he, Obama, who voted for the 2005 energy bill.
But don’t think that this is an isolated case of Obama being caught attacking McCain on an issue for which he has issues.
Though Obama has spent the last several weeks in reactionary mode against McCain (witness Obama’s latest response to McCain’s charge of Obama being an airhead celebrity, which we might term the “I’m rubber and you’re glue” approach), when Obama does go on the attack against McCain, pay attention.
We wrote a piece last month on just this very thing. You can go read it here, but here is the opening and closing:
As general election ramps up in earnest, there is a pattern emerging. The battles Obama is choosing to wage in the campaign show that when he attacks McCain, he often does so on issues on which he himself is vulnerable. It is an odd pattern to be sure. It is hard to tell if it is a deliberate strategy intended to head off criticism, or if it is the unintentional reaction of someone who is projecting his own potential weaknesses onto his opponent.
Not all battles a candidate must engage in are ones of choice. Some are thrust upon him by circumstances beyond his control. Others, however, are ones which a smart candidate, as Obama surely is, selects because he thinks they will provide him an advantage, help advance a key theme, or help frame his opponent in a particular manner. As this campaign progresses and the number and intensity of the battles between Obama and McCain increases, it will be fascinating to watch the ones Obama chooses. And to consider each time Obama goes after McCain: is this just another example of the pot calling the kettle... Oh wait. Can't go there. The use of a colorful phrase might create a hue and cry as being divisively distracting. Rather, each time Obama goes after McCain, we should consider the source.
We knew Obama would help make our point, and probably repeatedly. But we want to extend a very special thank you to him for making it in such a high profile and easily discernible way, and on the issue most important to voters right now.
Thank you Obama!