Your humble correspondent had figured the polls would start to narrow in the final week of the campaign but this stunning new Gallup poll shows the lead in the Presidential race narrowing much more rapidly than he had assumed. The latest Gallup poll of traditional likely voters shows the race has narrowed down to 49 percent for Barack Obama and 47 percent for John McCain. Here is Gallup's explanation of this poll:
Gallup's "traditional" likely voter model, which Gallup has employed for past elections, factors in prior voting behavior as well as current voting intention. This has generally shown a closer contest, reflecting the fact that Republicans have typically been more likely to vote than Democrats in previous elections.
Meanwhile, over at the Daily Kos, some have nervously pooh-poohed this poll but others are starting to hit the panic button. Here is a sampling of Kossacks sweating buckets with some commentary by your humble correspondent:
The Kossacks at the Daily Kos are hitting the panic button over the Obama "redistribution of wealth" audio which has become the hottest political topic on the Web, including the Drudge Report. As NewsBusters Mark Finkelstein has noted, most of the MSM morning TV shows, with the exception of Fox & Friends and Morning Joe, are still continuing to bury this story which your humble correspondent posted earlier today. However, this burial by the MSM is giving little comfort to the denizens of the Daily Kos. Right now they are trying to desperately spin away this story with excuses that Obama talking about "redistribution of wealth" was taken out of context or that we must understand the nuances of what he actually meant. You can see the Daily Kos spin control on this erupting story on this thread so let us now join the Kossacks as they sweat buckets trying to explain away Obama's words that could cost him the election:
The leftwing blogosphere went into full panic mode Saturday as a result of a tough interview Democratic vice presidential candidate Joe Biden had with a Florida anchorwoman two days ago (video embedded right).
As my colleague P. J. Gladnick previously reported, Barbara West of the ABC TV affiliate WFTV in Orlando gave Biden quite a grilling Thursday.
Yet, despite the obviously favorable and well-documented treatment Barack Obama and his running mate have received from the press during this campaign, Netroots members were shocked and appalled with how Biden was questioned.
Katharine Zaleski, the Senior News Editor at the Huffington Post, published the following Saturday (emphasis added):
Are there any mental health professionals out there? I'm trying to line them up now because if by some chance, despite all the gloating predictions of Chuck Todd & Co., Barack Obama loses the election, there is going to be a deep need for such people. Judge for yourself if experts in mental health help will be needed by checking out this Huffington Post blog by screenwriter and playwright Sherman Yellen titled, "My Coming November Crackup." I think you will agree, if Obama loses there will be a wave of grief and anger on the left, the likes of which we have never seen before. To get an idea of just how anxious the left is about this election, let us join Sherman nervously biting his fingernails (emphasis mine):
When a black republican like General Colin Powell endorses a major liberal figure like Barack Obama, it is amazing to see racial vitriol stop at a lefty website like Daily Kos:
Powell didn't just decimate the McCain campaign rationale, however. Powell also offered up an endorsement of Barack Obama in the strongest possible terms, saying that Obama would be an "exceptional president" and that he had the capacity to be "transformational."
The amazing part of all this is that Powell still considers himself a Republican. While there will never be an excuse for his role in supporting the Iraq war, one thing does seem clear: Powell's endorsement today will be a boost for Barack Obama's campaign, and therefore a good thing for this country.
How sweet of Daily Kos. Back in April of 2004 Daily Kos's love did not extend at all for General Powell. In fact, it was downright nasty:
Uncle Tom Powell Stumps for Massah Bush
Yes suh! Yes suh! Right away suh!
Mr. Powell sir, you are a liar and an apologist for a crooked regime known as the George W. Bush administration.
Charges of "RINO", "limp-wristed republican", "Rockefeller republican", and "squish" are likely among the names to be thrown at Powell from the conservative base, but John McCain has been receiving that treatment from the conservative establishment too.
Joe the Plumber (Joe Wurzelbacher) seems to have committed a Thought Crime in the eyes of the leftwing Blogosphere by daring to question the Lightworker. As a result, and because his name was brought up several times by John McCain at the debate last night, Joe the Plumber has been the subject of a lot of rage at both the Democratic Underground and the Daily Kos. The title of the DU thread alone tells you just how angry the left is:"Hey, Joe 'The Dumbass' Plumber. Listen up!" And the Daily Kos thread is flat out incorrect: "'Joe the Plumber'" Not a Registered Voter." Sorry, Kossacks, but Joe the Plumber is registered to vote. He just prefers to use his middle name but you were too eager to smear him to consider that fact when poring through the Ohio voting records.
Did you hear that Governor Palin is stupid? Well, if you watch TV, listen to the radio, or read any news outlet you can't help but find the lefties there claiming in unison that she is the dumbest woman to appear on the scene since Goldie Hawn made her chops as the blonde ditz on 1960's TV. And, heck it's gotta be true. Why, even her SAT scores prove it! Except that the "proof" of that is an Internet hoax that fooled Wonkette, the DailyKos and a blue million nutrooter sites. But, who cares? As long as it makes Palin look bad, we're golden, baby! Truth-schmooth, right?
For the last few days various groups like MoveOn.org, and the folks at Huffington Post, DailyKos and DemocraticUnderground have been beating the drum of a new theme to attempt to undermine the McCain campaign among the media. The newest claim from the extreme left is that McCain's focus on the Obama/Ayers connection is responsible for fostering "threats" and "violence" to be ginned up among Republicans at McCain rallies. The left is pushing the idea that McCain is inciting riots and "hate" among GOP voters and they are pushing this theme in an email campaign to the main Old Media outlets.
On October 9, for instance, I got no less than 25 emails "alerting" me to a particular Huffington Post jeremiad that is amusing in its replication of the same behavior it pretends to condemn. In this childish bloviation the HuffPo writer uses as much name calling, guilt by association, and bald faced lies as he claims to be refuting from McCain. But, the germ of the argument is that McCain is inciting violence.
The leftwing blogosphere has a new villain in addition to John McCain and Sarah Palin: Bill Clinton. They have been suspecting that Clinton has not been giving all out support to Barack Obama including his announcement to Larry King that he wouldn't begin campaigning for Obama until after October 9 out of respect for the Jewish High Holy Days. However, the straw that really broke the leftwing camel's back was Clinton's statement today to Chris Cuomo on ABC's Good Morning America defending John McCain's request for a debate delay until after the financial bailout crises is resolved. Here are a couple of things that Bill Clinton said that drove the left absolutely bonkers:
We know he didn't do it because he's afraid because Sen. McCain wanted more debates.
At least since September 8 the extreme left has been pushing a lie that Governor, then Mayor, Sarah Palin "charged rape victims for rape kits" performed upon them in the Alaskan town of Wasilla. The charge stems from a May 22, 2000 article in the local Wasilla paper The Frontiersman and has been spun from a comment made by the Wasilla Police Chief. This comment was somehow made into a Sarah Palin policy. Evidence of the incident, though, shows no involvement by Palin at all. Still, many Old Media outlets continue to keep illegitimately linking this rape kit billing claim to Sarah Palin, even though the truth is easily discovered.
As mentioned first up was The Frontiersman story from 2000. In that story Police Chief Fannon was quoted as standing against legislation that would force local municipalities to pick up the costs of rape kits being performed. In the interview Fannon said that, upon conviction, he favored the criminals being charged for the costs.
On CNN's American Morning today, White House correspondent Suzanne Malveaux reported on Barack Obama's campaigning in Virginia. Afterwards, anchor Kiran Chetry had a question:
CHETRY: All right. And Suzanne, what's on tap for the campaign today? And please tell me it's not lipstick again.
MALVEAUX: Let's hope not. He's going to be in Norfolk, Virginia. That is in southeast Virginia, and it's home to the world's largest Naval base. It's one of the most competitive areas that the Democrats and Republicans are fighting over. It's a critical piece of property, piece of land there with folks in Virginia, and they want those voters.
It wasn't that long ago that the left considered this November's election a mere formality on the road to Barack Obama's coronation as president. They loved posting poll after poll showing Obama winning by huge margins. Oh, how they gloated about the massive loss John McCain was sure to suffer. Well, the polls have changed and now the latest USA Today/Gallup poll shows quite a different result:
WASHINGTON — The Republican National Convention has given John McCain and his party a significant boost, a USA TODAY/Gallup Poll taken over the weekend shows, as running mate Sarah Palin helps close an "enthusiasm gap" that has dogged the GOP all year.
McCain leads Democrat Barack Obama by 50%-46% among registered voters, the Republican's biggest advantage since January and a turnaround from the USA TODAY poll taken just before the convention opened in St. Paul. Then, he lagged by 7 percentage points.
The convention bounce has helped not only McCain but also attitudes toward Republican congressional candidates and the GOP in general.
A new whisper campaign is forming in the blogosphere and creeping into web search engines across the internet as a self proclaimed e-zine called "LA Progressive" is spreading a false rumor that Sarah Palin called Barack Obama 'Sambo' while dining in an Alaska restaurant. Charley James, the author of the article that is unlikely to have his blogspot site shut down for Obama bias, also claims through 'anonymous sources' that Palin called Hillary Clinton a "b#^@h" in the same breath. It is getting pretty desperate out there.
As I reported earlier, the scurrilous claim that McCain vice presidential pick Governor Sarah Palin faked her pregnancy with a Down's Syndrome child is beginning to spread among the lowest of the nutrooters. Now, the unhinged, smear site DemocraticUnderground.com has boosted this lie to their front pages. Naturally, since these hate sites feed into each other, the spurious source of the DU story is another DailyKos story like the one I earlier reported upon.
Of course, this whole meme is nothing but a lie. Are we expected to believe an entire state, its hospitals, doctors and media establishment helped cover up this pregnancy story? And they all did this for a Republican, to boot? It makes little logical sense to believe a word of this black helicopter conspiracy theory. Next thing we know, the Kossacks and DUers are going to expect us to believe that Big Foot and some gray aliens were the attendants at the birth!
Taking a look at the stories in the Old Media will show that the Media is turning attack dog ASAP on McCain's choice for vice president, Sarah Palin. Notice the main meme is her supposed "inexperience." Funny how Palin was the VP pick for about 15 seconds before the Old Media went after her "inexperience" while they have yet to hit Barry Obama on HIS inexperience at all and he's been running for president since 2004. We should also note that Palin didn't get the honeymoon that Biden got when his announcement was made. But, the worst is yet to come and the Daily Kos is doing its level best to mine the lowest of lows. In a Kos diary today, it is being alleged that Sarah Palin "faked" the pregnancy of her last child, a baby born with Down's Syndrome. The claim is that it was her teenaged daughter's child, not hers. And, true to form, the Kossacks took that absurd calumny and hate even further in the comments.
With all the pseudo gravity the Kos diarist could muster, this ridiculous story of a "cover-up" was floated for the foolish Kossacks to lap up. Inky99 gave us the scurrilous diary headlined "Palin's faked 'pregnancy'? Covering for teen daughter?," in which the Kossacks posit that Governor Palin covered up her own teenage daughter's teen pregnancy by pretending it is her own child instead of her daughter's.
MSNBC's Keith Olbermann made his support for Barack Obama even clearer Thursday when moments after the junior senator from Illinois accepted his party's nomination as president, the "Countdown" host assailed an Associated Press writer for having the nerve to not be as enthralled with the Messiah's address as he was.
In Olbermann's crosshairs on this occasion was Charles Babington who penned an article that largely mirrored the opinions offered on Fox News by liberal contributors Juan Williams and Nina Easton: the speech was short on specifics.
This didn't sit well with Olbermann who said the following (video embedded right) :
NBC News has responded to John McCain's protest concerning biased election coverage by giving one of the most left-leaning members of the media -- a host from the ultra-liberal radio network Air America -- her own prime time program on MSNBC.
Honestly, how much further to the left can this network go?
As my colleague D.S. Hube reported, Andrea Mitchell on Sunday's "Meet the Press" suggested the Obama campaign felt John McCain "may not have been in the cone of silence" during Saturday's Saddleback Civil Forum, "and may have had some ability to overhear what the questions were."
Although she claimed this was being "[put] out privately" by Obama's people, CNN is now reporting that his campaign is "not pursuing whether McCain heard any of the other questions," and that they're "assuming McCain had the same information they did."
So where did Mitchell get this idea from? Might it have been a Daily Kos blog posted at 9:22 PM PDT Saturday entitled "McCain cheated? proof he knew the questions ahead of time":
Yesterday, in a stinging indictment of his Old Media colleagues' la-la-la treatment of the story of John Edwards's affair with Rielle Hunter, Los Angeles Times columnist Tim Rutten asserted that Edwards "may have ended his public life but he certainly ratified an end to the era in which traditional media set the agenda for national political journalism."
I'll get to Rutten's mostly perceptive points in a bit.
That's because recent developments indicate that Edwards may still be believe he can eventually re-enter public life, and they are relevant to Rutten's assertion:
Want to know just how beholden Democrats are to the ultra-left members of their Party?
Well, consider that Elizabeth Edwards actually posted an apology for her husband's affair -- as well as her own complicity in hiding it from people that were working for and supporting his presidential campaign -- at the extreme-left website Daily Kos.
Here are some highlights (emphasis added, h/t Lee Stranahan, photo courtesy Washington Post):
Profanity, those taboo words banned from the broadcast airwaves, is a feature of many people's daily lives. It's much less so in the establishment media world. TV and radio broadcasts are legally prohibited from using it, most newspapers have traditionally refrained from its usage.
That's not the case with the Web, where bloggers and readers face no such restrictions. That likely comes as no surprise; what may be surprising, however, is to what degree profanity seems to be a feature more common on one side of the political blogosphere than the other.
Which side is that? For answers, I turned to the search engine Google to see how common swearing is in the right and left blog universes by looking up the late stand-up comic George Carlin's "seven dirty words" in the most popular blog communities.
The results showed that online liberals tend to use profanity a lot more than online conservatives.
It appears something else that isn't tolerated at the ultra-left-leaning website Daily Kos is too much discussion about the extra-marital sexual escapades of Democrats the Netroots hold in high esteem.
At least, this appears to be the case given Saturday's banning of Lee Stranahan, a liberal blogger and video producer who's been writing diaries at DKos since at least April 2007, and has had his work featured at the Huffington Post.
My colleague P.J. Gladnick referenced Stranahan's HuffPo piece about Edwards back on July 27:
NewsBusters has reported for years how the ultra-left wing website Daily Kos will publish all kinds of hateful articles about conservative politicians and figures without ever deleting or editing them.
On Sunday, it was made infinitely clear to the Kossacks that although attacks on right-leaning figures are encouraged -- even if they've just passed away, such as the recent disgraceful posts about Jesse Helms' death -- you're not allowed to say anything bad about their hero, MSNBC's Keith Olbermann.
UPDATE at end of post: Kos denies the allegations.
Although frequent DK poster The Baculum King's "Keith Olbermann Stooping to Fox's Level Now??" has been deleted, Google still has the cached version for all to see (h/t NBer Thomas Stewart, vulgarity alert):
Just as I finish a piece laughing at DailyKos for claiming that it is conservatives that feel they have to "create their own alternate reality" because of their "rigid ideology," I find a story out of The Austin American-Statesman where the DailyKos forced that paper to pull a story that had a mildly satirical take on last weekend's Netroots Nation conference in Texas. Apparently, the DailyKos folks didn't like The Austin American-Statesman's "reality" so the Kossacks flooded the paper with their insistence on creating a new one.
The original article by the Statesman's Patrick Beach knocked the nutrooters for the so-called "surprise" Gore visit, said it turned into a "faint-in," and that their general feeling was "terribly self-confirming," among other snippy comments... fun, but snippy. The general tone of the piece was that of amusement at how seriously the nutrooters took themselves. And, even more galling to said nutrooters, this story was the front page editorial of Sunday's edition. (Original, Google cached version of Beach's piece.)
This did not sit well with the nutrooters in question.
The hiring of Howard Wolfson as a political contributor to Fox News has resulted in the ritual outrage from blue blogs and Fox haters. When they aren't smearing Wolfson ("sell-out", "right-wing Zionist", etc) the alternate tactic is used: diminish Fox by lying about its influence and reach.
NewsBusters readers are likely aware of my frequent appeal for civility in our comments sections due to my unwavering belief that despite political differences, when the sun sets, we're all Americans.
Such reverence should be crucial on the day someone that has tirelessly served this nation for thirty years passes away.
Apparently devoid of such human decency, the folks in the Netroots, within minutes of Friday's announcement concerning the death of Jesse Helms, began publishing virulent and vulgar epithets directed at the former senator, with some actually voicing a desire to dance on his grave.
Here are but a few examples, beginning with some truly disgusting diaries posted at Daily Kos (readers are warned that the following contains possibly offensive graphic and vulgar content, h/t LGF):