TARRING THE BABY: John McCain’s Race Baiting

TIME: When politicians interject race into a campaign, they seldom do it directly. Consider McCain’s new ad, which the campaign says it will be airing nationally. This is hardly subtle: Sinister images of two black men, followed by one of a vulnerable-looking elderly white woman. Let me stipulate: Obama’s Fannie Mae connections are completely fair game. But this ad doesn’t even mention a far more significant tie–that of Jim Johnson, the former Fannie Mae chairman who had to resign as head of Obama’s vice presidential search team after it was revealed he got a sweetheart deal on a mortgage from Countrywide Financial. Instead, it relies on a fleeting and tenuous reference in a Washington Post Style section story to suggest that Obama’s principal economic adviser is former Fannie Mae Chairman Frank Raines. Why? One reason might be that Johnson is white; Raines is black. And the image of the victim doesn’t seem accidental either, given the fact that older white women are a key swing constituency in this election. MORE

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