There are days when I wonder if I’m in the Twilight Zone. I live in AL, so you’d think I’d be used to this shit. And yet I’m still shocked when it’s in black and white, so to speak. From The Smoking Gun, h/t JJP:
Angered by a delay in the receipt of his voter registration card, a Louisiana man today threatened to shoot election officials, claiming that he urgently needed to cast a ballot to “keep the nigger out of office,” according to police. Wade Williams, 75, was arrested this morning on a felony terrorizing charge after allegedly calling the Registrar of Voters and warning that he would come to the state office and empty his shotgun unless he got his registration card. Using profanity and racial slurs, Williams told a state official “about needing to vote to ‘keep the nigger out of office,” according to an Ouachita Parish Sheriff’s Office affidavit, a copy of which you’ll find here. Though the document does not name the candidate to which Williams is so violently opposed, it seems likely he was referring to Democratic presidential candidate Barack Obama. After being arrested at his Monroe home, Williams was booked into the Ouachita Correctional Center, where the below mug shot was snapped. En route to the jail, he “continued his ‘tirade’ about niggers and also stated that he had a shotgun, but had it hidden at his residence,” reported Lt. Michael Judd.
Still can’t decide who to vote for? Want to see if you’re really as much of a disciple of your candidate as you think you are? Head over to ABC and try the Match-o-Matic II. You’ll go through a series of questions and at the end it will not only tell you with which candidate you’re more closely aligned, but with whom you agreed on each question. I actually agreed with McCain on two questions. Imagine that.
So I just heard McCain spokeswoman Nancy Pfotenhauer on MSNBC. The host asked her to respond to Joe Biden’s assertion on the Today show this morning that Sarah Palin, or any candidate for VP, should stop what they’re doing and call out any audience member who is yelling out obscenities about another candidate. Instead of addressing that issue, Pfotenhauer repeated the false accusations Palin made about a “close” relationship Obama allegedly has with Bill Ayers and then went on a bizarre rant about Ayers radical education agenda. This was a new one, as far as I could tell.
As we discussed yesterday, it is highly irresponsible for the McCain camp to be carrying on a campaign of dangerous rhetoric which appears to be on the verge of inciting violence. One of the commentors on this blog yesterday described a Palin rally as a “lynch mob,” not using the term lightly. The New York Times calls their campaign one of “race-baiting” and “xenophobia” and Radar is reporting that the Secret Service is investing a threat on Sen. Obama issued at one of Palin’s rallies. Still, in despite of all of this, Pfotenhauer ducks the question and continues the attacks. McCain couldn’t bring himself to confront Obama with this misinformation in person at the debates last night. What does that tell you?
**Update: I heard Ron Christie on public radio around lunchtime doing the same stick-to-the-Ayers thing. The discussion was on whether or not the candidate speaking has the obligation to put a stop to racist or vicious (i.e. violence inducing) language coming from the audience he or she is addressing. Christie didn’t have the backbone to stand up for what is right, instead holding the party line in perpetuating the Ayers myth.
Doesn’t it seem like Halloween gets here earlier every year? I swear that as I get older, each holiday gets here before I feel like I’m ready for the last one. You know what else seems to happen earlier every time? Political cycles. We’ve never seen a Presidential election cycle run this long. And I don’t think we’ve ever seen the dirty polling tricks start this early. Take this from the Philadelphia Inquirer, h/t the BRAD BLOG:
An anonymous flier circulating in African-American neighborhoods in North and West Philadelphia states that voters who are facing outstanding arrest warrants or who have unpaid traffic tickets may be arrested at the polls on Election Day.
We know this is not a new trick and here we have it again, but I’m not sure I’ve ever seen it this early. The Philly.com piece was on 10/2, so the flier had to have been around days before that. That’s more than 30 days out from election day. Huh.
Keep your eyes out, people. I keep saying that this is gonna be a rough one. It is.
From the Straight Talk Express: If you’re running attack ads, you don’t have much to say to begin with:
The Washington Post is reporting this morning that the McCain campaign is planning a “fiercer strategy against Obama” in the last 30 days leading up to the election. The strategy will focus on personal attacks vice focusing on the real issues facing Americans, namely the “kitchen table” issues like gas prices, home foreclosures, and jobs. This is probably a really poor strategy, especially after the September jobs report showing that 159,000 jobs were lost in September in nearly every sector of the economy. Let’s see: attack Obama by trying to tear him down personally or give the American people concrete solutions to help them in this economic downturn. I think I’ll take the latter strategy of the Obama campaign.
There are some clouds gathering once again into a bit of storm for the Obama campaign over a loose and past association Obama had with Bill Ayers, one of the founders of the Weathermen, a radical anti-Vietnam-war organization in the ’60’s and ’70’s. The McCain campaign, declaring that they will run an even more negative and personal attack campaign in the 30 days left before the election, is sure to use this association. 527 groups, like the American Issues Project, are running negative ads against the Senator using the association.
Here’s where I think the McCain campaign should be careful. The chief complaint against Ayers is that his organization used bombs in carrying out their missions. Get ready now ’cause I’m gonna make some folks mad: McCain is strongly associated with Bush, who took this country into a war based on fake intelligence, by many accounts ginned up by the White House itself. The bombs that the Bush White House used have killed thousands upon thousands.
McCain also needs to be careful in beginning a harsh personal attack campaign against Obama. Party faithful are locked into their candidates by now. The folks both campaigns are looking to convince at this point are swing voters and they are increasingly turned off by personal politics in this election. In this election, particularly, they are looking for answers: how will they keep their homes, how will they pay for gas, how will the find or keep a job? These “kitchen table” issues really are driving this election.
Of course, this is exactly why the McCain campaign is trying this new strategy. They are losing big while the campaign is focused on the economy. This new tactic is one of desperation.
I cannot live blog the VP debate. I’m so pissed about Sarah Palin that I cannot do it. So many people don’t understand. She is not just the VP candidate … the wholly unqualified VP candidate … for the Republican party this year. She is the future of the Republican party. That’s not funny. That’s terrifying and it’s obscene that McCain has put her in that position. Were she and McCain to win the White House, she would be the obvious heir to the throne for the Republican party and that should scare the shit out of every one of you.
So, no, I won’t live blog this because I’ll just be too pissed to do it. Y’all enjoy. Back later.