“Gutter Politics”

That’s how I’d describe the whole TNGOP Barack Hussein Obama controversy. I would never support Obama because he’s an empty suit with whom I have almost no policy agreements. But to claim this?

That’s no different than saying “Hillary Rodham Clinton” or “Richard Milhouse Nixon,” [State GOP Chairman Robin Smith] said.

That’s just disingenuous. I would have more respect for her if she’d just given an honest answer, something along the lines of, “Emphasizing that ‘Hussein’ is Barack Obama’s middle name implies that he is a Muslim and is therefore a great tool for appealing to the racist and xenophobic tendencies among some voters. Therefore, we believe that utilizing a campaign such as this can suppress Obama support and help our candidates win.”

Yeah, it would have been sleazy, but at least it would have been honest.

Meanwhile, Music City Oracle argues that strategies like this could end up costing the GOP (and I agree).

UPDATE: Bill Hobbs complains that the media is focusing on the press release’s use of Obama’s middle name instead of the actual policy criticisms it contained. Unfortunately, the media’s preoccupation with this is a direct result of the TNGOP’s decision to use ‘Hussein’. The TNGOP is savvy enough to know this would happen (and may have even wanted it). They have no one to blame but themselves.

UPDATE II: Bob Krumm has some thoughts, and Brendan Loy is evidence of MCO’s point.

UPDATE III: Lamar Alexander puts a stop to the fun.

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