Given the crap I have taken for pointing out that “lofty” rhetoric and “elevating the spirits” of a few excitable people is not enough to win a general election, I enjoyed reading this prevew of what is to come from Karl Rove should Obama win the nomination:
The fourth and biggest reason why Mrs. Clinton won two nights ago is that, while Mr. Obama can draw on the deep doubts of many Democrats about Mrs. Clinton, he can’t close out the argument. Mr. Obama is an inspiring figure playing a historical role, but that’s not enough to push aside the former First Lady and senator from New York. She’s an historic figure, too. When it comes to making the case against Mrs. Clinton, Mr. Obama comes across as a vitamin-starved Adlai Stevenson. His rhetoric, while eloquent and moving at times, has been too often light as air.
Mr. Obama began to find his voice at the Iowa Jefferson-Jackson Day dinner, when he took four deliberate swipes at the Clintons. He called for Democrats to tackle problems “that had festered long before” President Bush, “problems that we’ve talked about year after year after year after year.”
He dismissed the Clinton style of campaigning and governing, saying “Triangulating and poll-driven positions . . . just won’t do.” He attacked Mrs. Clinton on Iraq, torture and her opposition to direct presidential talks with Syria and Iran. Then he rejected a new Clinton era by saying, “I don’t want to spend the next year or the next four years re-fighting the same fights that we had in the 1990s.” It deftly, if often indirectly, played on the deep concerns of Democrats who look at the Clinton era as a time of decline for their party and unfulfilled potential for their cause.
But rather than sharpen and build on this message of contrast and change, Mr. Obama chose soaring rhetoric and inspirational rallies. While his speeches galvanized true believers at his events, his words were neither filling nor sustaining for New Hampshire Democrats concerned about the Clintons and looking for a substantive alternative.
Flame away, but I am not out in left field when I point this out. This is a weak point for Obama, and while all of you are high on the ether of his “positive message for change,” Karl Rove and his friends are taking notes and loading up. Although I suppose what you will really do is ignore everything and just accuse me of parroting GOP/Clinton talking points.