Sunday battleground discussions, plus Axelrod & Davis

Chief Obama strategist David Axelrod and McCain campaign manager Rick Davis were on Fox News Sunday earlier today discussing the campaign and defending their respective candidate. I’ve also added further discussions of the battleground states from Face the Nation with Bob Schieffer.

Part 1 of Axelrod & Davis:

Part 2 of Axelrod & Davis:

Report from Fox News on their appearance:

Batting around accusations of lies, blind ambition and poor judgment, the two top advisers to John McCain and Barack Obama got into a verbal sparring match Sunday over which campaign is using the harshest tactics and meanest accusations to scare voters.

Appearing simultaneously on “FOX News Sunday, Obama’s chief adviser David Axelrod and McCain campaign manager Rick Davis took the gloves off before accusing each other of landing the lowest blows this election season.

Axelrod hit the McCain team on the increasingly agitated rhetoric coming from voters attending McCain rallies. In recent days, several people at rallies for McCain and Sarah Palin have accused Obama of being a terrorist because he is friendly with Weather Underground founder Bill Ayers. Axelrod said the Republican presidential candidate has to be responsible for stirring up anger among voters.

“When you stand up and you say someone’s been palling around with terrorists, they don’t see America the way we see it, you don’t really know who he is, and so on, and people start yelling, ‘Kill him, bomb him, off with his head,’ that is not where we want to take politics in this country,” Axelrod said. “There are parameters, and those parameters have been crossed. Now, we give Senator McCain credit for, at the end of the week, taking on a couple of these comments in his appearances. But the ads are continuing to drive this. And you know, you have to take responsibility.”

Davis responded that he did not think the hostile remarks are appropriate either but said it’s not McCain who is enabling those remarks. He also blasted Obama for not condemning Democratic Rep. John Lewis, who on Saturday compared the McCain rallies to segregationist George Wallace back in the 1960s.

Part 1 of the Face The Nation battleground discussion:

Part 2 of the Face The Nation battleground discussion:

This is really coming down the wire in some of these states, it will be interesting to watch how this plays out. Virginia, especially near and dear as I’m a resident, hasn’t gone blue sine 1964 yet it may now go either way.


I found this fun video of Harry Smith and the senior editor of the New Republic playing with some big puzzle pieces and discussing the swing states:

So Harry Smith is predicting that by 7 or 8pm eastern time on election night, we’d know who won based on those three states.

  • IndiMinded

    I guess no race is over until it’s over, but Obama’s polling ahead in every single battleground state, the one exception being Missouri where he’s behind by under 1 point.

    I’m not really sure what sort of a game changer would be needed to deliver this to McCain within the next few weeks. I guess maybe if some particularly insidious ACORN activities and Obama’s involvement was undeniably made clear, but even then I’m doubting it.

    But October’s already brought plenty of surprises, who knows.

  • Why do news organizations continue to invite campaign representatives on to their shows to debate each other? Brokaw did it last week, and now Wallace. Voters are rarely informed or persuaded by their useless talking points crosstalk.

  • bdjnk

    Perhaps no one is persuaded, but I found the fox clip very amusing.

    I think that the polls haven’t had time to catch up with the growing awareness of Obama’s connections to ACORN, Odinga, Alinsky, and all the other unpleasant people and organizations.


    Race aint over yet. Polls always show a democrat ahead by a good amount and are never as far apart as shown. I must ad, David Axelrod is one of the few people that I despise on this planet. Whenever i see the man on a show anywhere he gets me very heated.

  • All i have to say is “The Bradley effect”

    So anything can happen.


    you despise all democrats what else is new? LOL!!

  • EricF or you be the judge…

    Fortunately, we and many others online know how to do a screen capture and how to use a little something called Google Cache.

    As of yesterday, stated:

    Fact: Barack was never an ACORN trainer and never worked for ACORN in any other capacity.

    Sometime on Friday, the website was altered, and the text was changed to state:

    Fact: ACORN never hired Obama as a trainer, organizer, or any type of employee.

    i have to wonder if this guy has ever told a truth in his life. every instinct i have tells me this guy has dirty hands in everything he has been accused of. this whole thing is unreal. im confident the truth will find the surface.

    heres a websitethat claims it offers no smears and just the facts on obama. im sure if that were not the case obama would have sued and the site would have already been taken down.

  • PeoplePower

    EricF – the two statements you list as having been altered mean virtually the same thing. What’s the issue?

    The “nohussein” name of that site simply blares out the racism (what would you call an anti-religious bigotry?). “oooh, his middle name is Hussein, he must be bad…”. Are all Latinos named Jesus automatically good??

    The facts listed, from my brief perusal, are all tiny things that are known well. If those things bother you, you *really* need to dig deeper into McCain/Palin, who are both quite tainted.

    You make a big thing of Rezko and yet people here blow off McCain’s relationship with Keating – a man who very heavily funded McCain’s political career from the beginning and was instrumental in McCain working to de-regulate Keating’s industry. I would say McCain may not have had a political career w/o Keating…

    Come on. Do you really think a politician can have a chance at running for President w/o gigantic campaign contributions??

    The problem isn’t Rezko or Keating, it’s the system. So long as we have a solidly, two-party system requiring hundreds of millions of dollars to run a campaign, we will continue to have a “my side – your side” election with the middle, undecideds having the final say.

    As for me, nothing will deter me from voting for Obama. Even if he were a Muslim, I wouldn’t care. You see, I’m not at all concerned that any President of this country would try to ban any given religion, except Republicans who are hyper-tied to the Religious “Right”.

    I’m not concerned that someone would try to push through Shariah (sp?) law. Although, if the social conservatives won enough power and sway, I worry about them pushing through their Christian version of Shariah law, which is *no* better.

    You see. I’m an odd Liberal. I would fight & die for your right to hold your beliefs and practice your faith, or lack thereof. If you’re an atheist, I’m on your side. If you’re a Christian, I’m on your side. If you’re a Scientologist, I’m on your side. Whatever.

    I don’t have to agree or approve of your religion to believe fervently that you have the right to it.

    I do, however, believe fervently that there are those on the Right (like Palin) who would (if they could) eliminate “undesirable” religions from being legal…

    Stop believing everything Fox tells you or odd websites published by obviously biased people. McCain is not a saint, but that’s not why I won’t vote for him. I think his policy ideas are horrible and won’t do much good for the country (and yet, I do like some of his ideas – calling out earmarks madness & publishing budget specifics).

  • EricF

    lol PeoplePower you quickly dismiss my post on no merit

    “EricF – the two statements you list as having been altered mean virtually the same thing. What’s the issue?”

    nice try! changing it from

    Fact: Barack was never an ACORN trainer and never worked for ACORN in any other capacity.


    Fact: ACORN never hired Obama as a trainer, organizer, or any type of employee.

    basically admits he was a trainer or organizer but just wasnt getting paid or wasnt on the books. once again the dishonesty comes out.

    then you try to turn the whole conversation into a religious thing. when did i bring up religion? when did i say he was a muslim? because some website uses his middle name now thats racist? nice try! again. lol. disrespect? sure. racism? i dont think so.

  • PeoplePower

    EricF – there are many lies out about ACORN right now. I haven’t checked every claim, but I *know* that some of them are trumped up. So what if Obama was a trainer or not?!?

    It does not *say* he volunteered as a trainer. It simply says he wasn’t hired by them. Even if some of the charges are accurate, the organization as a whole provides good services. Volunteering for such an organization does not automatically make *you* a bad person.

    If I worked for a company, say Enron, that did some bad things, does that mean *I* am bad? And even if you believed it was, would I still be ‘bad’ if I worked as an unpaid intern for them?

    As for the religion thing – I wasn’t sure what word describes someone who is bigoted against a given religion, in this case Islam. Racism was the simple, but incorrect, word I used as a substitute. Try taking in the rest of what I wrote in that context.

    The site you mentioned has this anti-Islamic zeal about it that calls into question the value of what it is saying. If it were called “” or something along those lines, it wouldn’t be trying to play up his middle name as something akin to the boogeyman. Don’t try to deny it, the use of Hussein is meant specifically to scare people about the Islamic background he has, even if it is a tiny part of his background…

    Hey – I have a tiny bit of English in my background. Does that mean I worship at the Church of England and eat scones and take afternoon tea? Hardly, but it’s a part of my heritage.

    These backwards people are using that as a scare tactic.

    They’re (and the McCain camp and Fox news) are playing on the ignorance of their supporters/viewers that is the same sort of ignorance that caused some Siekh’s to be attacked in Arizona after September 11th. “They looked Muslim.” AARGH! Yet another bad chapter in this country’s history of not living up to the principles of the Founding Fathers…

    That is *why* I brought up religion.

    Don’t vote for Obama because you don’t like his policies and make your arguments on that basis. If your only reason for not voting for him is his “shady” background, I implore you *again* to check the background of McCain & Palin…

  • Bill Hedges

    People Power- Your comment seemed to be a attempt at fairness. However ponting out Fox news the way you did does not seem fair to me. I have watched most of the news medias. Bias exist in all, in my eyes. Can you not see good and bad in near all of them ? Yes I am a republican. I assume you are a Democrat. Just thought you was going for neutral stance in this comment., I personal feel you blew it on that point.

  • Babs

    Nate, thanks for including the last video. I take a lot of pride in driving Obama’s trolls out of Georgia. Maybe we need to make the trip to Virginia, we can help you out up there. 😉

    Axlerod is just another of Alinsky’s students, O_S. They are all radicals, like Obama, and all use Alinsky’s Rules for Radicals in their campaigning. We shouldn’t expect them to do better. They don’t know how.

  • PeoplePower

    Bill – I bring up Fox news because it is clearly a source of information that EricF seems to use. I also bring it up because it is the most right-leaning of the cable news networks.

    I’ve said before that bias is in the eye of the beholder. I see bias as a spectrum of left-leaners vs. right-leaners. If I lean to the left, something that is centrist would likely appear biased against my worldview. That doesn’t make it wrong, partly because I am not always right but also because a fact has no bias, unless presented w/o full disclosure of pertinent details.

    There certainly is bias in the other networks. I would be a fool to say that Fox is the *only* network with bias. They are the most biased against my worldview and tend to tilt their bias much more to the right than the supposedly liberal MSM tilts to the left.

    As for being a Democrat, that happens to only be the case for the time-being. Should a highly progressive Republican candidate emerge, I would vote for him or her, if the Democrat were a corporatist, right-leaning Democrat. A Goldwater Republican would be okay, but they would still need to be pretty progressive.

    Of course, the way the Republican party has skewed, a Goldwater Republican would be labeled a Liberal by the Republican talking heads.

    What President provided a great deal of funding, perhaps the founding act (?), for Planned Parenthood? Why that *crazy* Liberal, Richard Nixon!!

    I worry that the partisan garbage that some people spew here, and many people spew elsewhere, will drive a nasty wedge between us all. Some people get so emotionally attached to their candidates that they will buy any piece of propaganda they hear against their opponent. Worse-yet, they refuse to check into accusations made about *their* candidate, while believing every bit about their opponent…tsk, tsk.

    This simply creates a villification mindset and we fall into the “my side, your side” mode of voting and thought. Anyone believing that their party is always right and the other party is always wrong has some serious problems with their brain…

  • Bill Hedges

    People Power You said McCain & Fox is playing on ignorance. That is very strong. If it was your attempt to give nrutral fair opionions to another person, your statement failed to do that. If I am wrong in your intensions, I apologize for my getting involved…..You bring up many thoughts in your latestest comment. I am not qualified to answer many items you mention.. But I will bring up one that disturbs me. Trouper=gate. I hear no out-cry for a young boy being shocked with the stun gun. Even if the boy asked for it. The police officer should have been fired. Period. Yet that is ignored ! Why ? No national out-rage on this. Instaad Sarah is investigated. The man fired worked at Governor’s pleasure. No reason is necessary to fire him.

  • PeoplePower

    Bill – a lot of the talking heads on the right are playing on ignorance. To pull the fear card over and over, plays on ignorance.

    The Bush Administration did it to great effect in 2002, 2004 and finally failed in 2006.

    The fear card? “Lookout, there’s terrorists lurking around every corner! And if you vote for a Democrat, the terrorists *will* strike us again.” Many in the Bush Administration, especially Cheney, played on this fear.

    By equating Obama with Osama AND by making special note of his middle name AND I’m sure there are others, but I can’t think of them right now; the McCain/Palin ticket (and Fox and the talking heads on the right) are playing up the terrorist fear again.

    Not only is it a false fear – does anyone actually believe that a Democratic President would drop the ball on defending this country? If you do, you’re likely impossibly entrenched in the Republican camp and can’t be convinced of *any* good about the Democrats.

    Are you aware that it is more likely for you to get mugged, robbed or murdered than it is that you would die in a terrorist attack? It’s like buying a lottery ticket but blowing off getting struck by lightning…you’re more likely to be struck by lightning than to win the lottery…

    It pisses me off, because it is effectively calling the American public too stupid to recognize the propaganda; and clearly *some* are. So when McCain/Palin do it, it pisses me off even further, as they are supposedly “a fresh new kind of Republican.”

    McCain is going to go down in history very badly, unless he returns to the high road he swore up and down he would stay on. The guy was brutalized by Bush in 2000 and should know better…and he is trying, now, but it is likely a case of too little, too late. His & Palin’s rhetoric has been so alarmist and fear-mongering, it’s no wonder that the crazies are coming out of the woodwork and shouting inappropriate things at their rallies.

    At least McCain winced when someone yelled “terrorist” at some rally last week or the week before. I saw his face. You *know* it horrifies him to go down this path – yet he & Palin continued for a few more days (at least) before he began trying to back down the rhetoric and the fever-pitch they themselves whipped up.

    Let’s hope the Secret Service found those that yelled “kill him” and “off with his head” and jailed them or punished them appropriately…

  • Bill Hedges

    People Power- Our beliefs are far apart. I do hope you the best though.