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Progressives Sound Alarm About Obama Campaign


First Posted: 08-19-08 11:45 AM   |   Updated: 09-19-08 05:12 AM

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Yesterday, three prominent progressive bloggers suggested Barack Obama has a serious weakness. Josh Marshall writes at TPM:

With so many instances of corruption and influence-peddling around him and whatever problems with the candidate that are keeping the campaign from letting reporters interview him anymore, John McCain is now again charging Obama with what amounts to soft treason -- wanting to lose the war in Iraq in order to make himself president. The lack of any consistent lines of attack against McCain is becoming palpable.

John Aravosis chimes in at America Blog, saying Obama's lack of attack is having an effect on activists:

What Josh said today, and what Josh has written between the lines of a lot of posts on his blog of late, is something we're hearing a lot of from a lot of people. There is an incredible discontent out there with the way this campaign is being run. The fact that the discontent isn't being recognized, isn't being assuaged, is disturbing. People aren't worried about the election, they're becoming despondent about it. They're not motivated to work twice as hard, they instead feel as if they've had the wind knocked out of them. This is far beyond a healthy skepticism as to whether Obama can win. While Obama's attacks today on McCain are heartening, we need to see more of it. People need to see that Barack Obama has as big of balls as John McCain and, well, Hillary Clinton.

Joe Sudbay adds:

Just to be clear, this isn't the kind of post we want to be writing right now. We'd much rather be beating the crap out of John McCain's hypocrisy and rebutting the Karl Rove attacks on Obama. Anyone who read this blog during the primaries knows how strongly we felt about nominating Obama. Our commitment can't be questioned. We really, really, really want a Democratic president. But, we're not getting much to work with from the Obama campaign, hence this post. As John wrote, this feeling is pervasive. For some reason, Obama's top advisers seem to be living in their own bubble and this campaign, which we all thought would be different, is starting to feel like Democratic campaigns of the past. There's plenty of time to fix this. The blogs are poised to help (should the campaign ever decide to truly engage us). Not to be corny, but this campaign isn't about Barack Obama or his campaign staff or his media consultants or his Internet team. It's bigger than all of them and they need to realize that. This really is about our nation's future. We have to win and the Obama campaign needs to let us all help him win.

Today Obama responded to McCain's patriotism attacks in a style he used effectively against Hillary Clinton -- criticizing the tone of his opponent's campaign. Whether that will blunt those attacks or satisfy worried observers remains to be seen.

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