Monday, July 21, 2008

You Just Wait. Pretty Soon They'll Say That He, Willie Horton, and Angela Davis Killed Jesus

"Don't hope for new energy, vote for it," a new ad for the McCain campaign advises Americans, which blames Democratic presidential candidate Barack Obama for the rising cost of gas prices.

According to CBS, "The campaign says the spot will air on cable and in Colorado, Indiana, Michigan, Missouri, Nevada, New Hampshire, New Mexico, Ohio, Pennsylvania, (northern) Virginia, and Wisconsin."

In the ad, a female narrator almost whispers, "Gas prices - $4, $5, no end in sight, because some in Washington are still saying no to drilling in America," as the camera focuses on a solitary gas pump, and the murmurs of a chanting crowd can be heard in the background. "No to independence from foreign oil."

A closeup of numbers skyrocketing up on the gas pump is then inserted.

"Who can you thank for rising prices at the pump?" the narrator asks as a picture of a smiling Obama materializes next to the pump and in front of the numbers which are still rocketing out of control. The crowd has been chanting Obama's name, the ad reveals.

The video then disrupts and turns to black, before turning to shots of McCain: "One man knows we must now drill more in America and rescue our family budgets."

The Washington Post's Howard Kurtz calls the ad a "stretch," but adds that it "might have some appeal."

"John McCain may try in this ad to blame rising gas prices on Barack Obama, but after seven and a half years of the Bush administration, that's a stretch," Kurtz writes for the paper's The Trail blog. "McCain himself said last week that America's 'dangerous dependence on foreign oil has been 30 years in the making'; Obama has been in Washington for four."

Kurtz adds, "It's a bit audacious for McCain to charge that 'some in Washington' still oppose offshore oil drilling, since that was his position, most notably in his 2000 presidential campaign, until he reversed himself last month and called for a lifting of the 27-year federal ban on such drilling."

"Nor is there any evidence that Obama opposes 'independence from foreign oil,' although his energy plan is very different," Kurtz continues. "The Illinois senator has called McCain's plan for a temporary gas-tax holiday a gimmick."

Finally, Kurtz concludes, "Drilling off the coasts would increase U.S. oil production but have no short-term impact on gas prices. While some analysts disagree, an Energy Department report last year said production would not start until 2017 and have no 'significant' effect on prices or supplies until 2030."

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