Alex Massie

“Ambition” is the new “Uppity”

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Sarah Palin on Barack Obama and Bill Ayers today:

This pattern raises serious questions about Senator Obama's judgment.  It raises serious questions about his truthfulness.  But there is no question about his ambition.

Ambition explains launching your political career in the living room of an unrepentant terrorist.

Indeed. Because you too would start your decades-long conspiracy to steal the Presidency in the home of an "unrepentent terrorist". That's a sensible ambition! Who could possibly fail to see that? Doesn't Obama's association - no more than that - with Ayers undermine the "he's a secret terrorist-sympathiser" narrative? Or have we, I suppose, now reached the point where the GOP skips the "secret" bit and just calls Obama a terrorist who's so cunning he hides his terrorism in plain sight?

There's a bigger problem here. Even if this kind of tactic works an McCain pulls off an improbable victory, the manner of his triumph will poison his victory. There will be no goodwill or groundswell of support from the decent, patriotic middle for a President McCain. By contrast, a President Obama is going to enjoy enormous support and will be given the benefit of the doubt by millions of people who didn't actually vote for him. He will, I rather think, have a prolonged Presidential honeymoon. One that is likely to be extended the more people recall the nature of the desperate campaign he defeated.

And that means that these kinds of tactics, I think, will make the eventual Republican recovery a longer, slower, more painful affair than it would have been had the GOP lost with class and decency.

Written byAlex Massie

Alex Massie is Scotland Editor of The Spectator. He also writes a column for The Times and is a regular contributor to the Scottish Daily Mail, The Scotsman and other publications.

Topics in this articlePolitics