Tuesday, April 29, 2008

Sound and Fury

As of today, there’s no doubt Jeremiah Wright has gone from a consistent thorn to Barack Obama’s campaign to a tumor that is steadily poisoning it with angry noise.

In response to comments made by Wright last weekend, Obama today issued his strongest attempt yet to divorce himself from his ex-pastor. But the damage to Obama’s presidential bid is deepening, fueled by repeatedly lame, guilt-by-association politics, and the media’s obsession with Wright’s every syllable, beginning at right-wing outlets like Fox before then bleeding into larger sources.

One reason for this Wright story lasting as long as it has involves the drawn-out pace of the Democratic primaries.

As Obama and Clinton slug it out, the media feels compelled to talk about something in-between state contests, and Wright is as salacious a story as any floating about right now with the possible exception of Miley Cyrus’ bare teenage back. But closer to the point, when I think of Obama’s current PR quagmire, I can’t help thinking of Willem Defoe (as Norman Osborn in “Spider-Man”) speechifying that the only thing people love more than a hero is to see a hero fail.

For months, Barack Obama was that lofty hero, enjoying huge campaign coffers and sunny comparisons to JFK while stacking up caucus victories. Then the Wright story ignited in March, and Obama’s campaign has been in a slow tailspin every since, while today Hillary Clinton—still lagging in numbers—is regaining momentum in Indiana, and today captured an attagirl from North Carolina’s governor.

As for John McCain, he’s doing little else but killing time – puttering around in his tour bus, and glad-handing locals as the Dems sort their laundry.

Is Obama on the ropes? Not yet.

I still feel that come Denver this August, Obama will be the Democrats’ man. But his message (already unfocused) is taking a beating from the constant media bleating around insinuations of his past.

Maybe one day, we’ll all get back to real issues hitting the country. Too bad it won’t happen anytime soon.

No comments: