James Forsyth

The US elections are about to turn dirty

The US elections are about to turn dirty
Text settings
Comments

Mitt Romney’s win in the Michigan Republican primary makes this Saturday’s Republican vote in South Carolina all the more important. If John McCain wins there, he should—barring disasters—end up as the Republican nominee. If he doesn’t, the race becomes wide open and Rudy Giuliani’s much criticised late state strategy could end up paying off.

Politics is a dirty business in South Carolina and in 2000 John McCain was defeated in one of the nastiest campaigns ever conducted. No blow was too low. It was claimed that been turned while a prisoner of war in Vietnam and was really a Communist sleeper agent and that his adopted Bangladeshi baby was really an illegitimate child from an affair with a black woman.

This time round the McCain camp claim they are ready for the dirty tricks. They better be. There is already a flier out there claiming that McCain, who was so badly tortured in Vietnam that to this day he can’t lift his arms above his shoulders, sung like a “songbird” to his captors.

The Democrats vote a week after the Republicans in South Carolina and that contest looks like it to will suffer from baseless accusations being thrown around. One South Carolina Democrat I spoke to in Washington last week was bemoaning how effective the Obama is a Muslim agent smear has been down in the state. 

Written byJames Forsyth

James Forsyth is Political Editor of the Spectator. He is also a columnist in The Sun.

Comments
Topics in this articlePolitics