Frank Rich tells us this morning that the McCain campaign is doing all it can to go the way of George Allen in Virginia. Apparently, it didn’t get the news that Allen lost that election in ’06. Allen’s maccaca improv that sunk his campaign is being replayed, eerily close to verbatim by McCain aides, his brother, and others in the campaign, pitting the real virginia against the what, “unreal virginia” real americans against fake americans, not communist virginia against communist virginia. communist, fake, unreal, and so forth = maccaca= obama.
Rich’s real point here is that McCain’s cynical play on virginia is actually quite dumb because most white virginians, like most white americans are not racist. Punto. They are not racist. And since they are not racist, the race card, the “othering card” only goes so far in 2008, and has already backfired for McCain as it did for George Allen.
And I think Florida is having a similar experience. I just spoke to my white jewish folks in Florida; and they told me that most, not all, but most of their (white, jewish) friends are voting Obama. Sarah Silverman’s “the great schlep” video reminds of us of the similarities between parts of florida (jewish) and parts of virginia (outside the dc loop). The florida concern is that jewish voters, like “white virginians” won’t vote for Obama because of skin color, name etc. The florida narrative is that jews may be less scared of “commies” but more scared of a president who might betray their pro-israel interests.
Narrative aside the underlying fear of other is the same. But this year, it looks like this fear has subsided enuf so that Obama might well take Florida as well as Virginia.