July 29th, 2008

And You Thought It Would Be Easy

by Philip Baruth

For anyone who thought Obama was going to ride a 7-point margin into the White House, against a toothless and befuddled McCain campaign, think again. Because here it comes, a bit out of left field but very much a harbinger of things to come: an Ohio-based design company has “mistakenly” produced a run of campaign buttons pairing the likeness of Barack Obama with that of Larry Craig.

Craig in boa

Now, maybe it’s VDB, but we would dispute the likelihood that anyone, in the year 2008, could genuinely and mistakenly pair anyone with the storied Senator from Idaho. The original design called for Obama to be paired with the Democratic challenger for Craig’s seat, one Larry LaRocco.

Let’s remember a few things: 1) the McCain camp is now dominated by Rove-trained strategists; 2) Rove has used anti-gay sentiment to his advantage in nearly every campaign he has ever run; 3) such a campaign is easiest to field against a relatively undefined candidate, one seeking a positive introduction to the bulk of American voters; and 4) one quick “mistakenly” produced image like this can earn enough free media to match a very expensive ad buy.

So is this company, Tiger-Eye Design, the gay-baiting tip of the GOP spear? Who knows. But suffice it to say that this isn’t the last you’ll see of Larry Craig this cycle, or the last of a series of attempts to cast doubt on the authenticity of the Obamas’ marriage.

Up next: rumors that it was Obama, against all odds, who greenlighted Jeff Gannon’s hundreds of visits to the White House.