The ever-elegant, polished purveyor of a hope for the new Camelot has stepped into several piles of political, uh, mud of late and has found himself spending more time at damage control than politicking.
Could it be that he simply slipped up and moved, bag and baggage (temporarily), into a Harvard (his alma mater) mindset, i.e., viewing the unwashed masses down an uplifted nose or, maybe it was just a hemi-demi-semi-quaver, quickly regretted and patched up sooner than you can say, "elitist."
Here is the gaffe, uttered quite deliberately to a white-collar San Francisco audience. "You go into these small towns in Pennsylvania and, like a lot of small towns in the Midwest, the jobs have been gone now for 25 years and nothing's replaced them. And it's not surprising then they get bitter, they cling to guns or religion."
Obama made this statement without one stammer, which begs the question, is this what he really believes? Religious people have good memories and they recall an article in a 1993 Washington Post that described evangelical Christians as "poor, undereducated and easy to command."
Then, there is the solipsistic Rev. Wright's influence on Obama. Any American, who attends a church for 20 years because the pastor is like an Uncle, cannot say he never heard anything scatological come out of his Uncle's mouth, without snickering up his sleeve.
After the "God and Religion" remark, Obama first said "everybody knows it's true." When that failed to assuage the polls, he then did a little political pirouette and said what he really meant was that economic anxiety prods people to focus on cultural and social issues. Huh?
What he really meant is that the body politics' obsessions with the right to bear arms and faith in God are misplaced priorities.
I wondered if Obama, after all these revealing Freudian slips, can convince the white, working class, Christian voters that he is just a regular guy, come up hard.
So, I scoured my e-mails, read many blogs and finally came up with some ideas to pass on to Obama to get him back in the mainstream of America:
1) Get rid of the campaign bus (too much like Dukakis) and buy a small fleet of Dodge Ram Mega, CrewCab 3500 pick-ups (gun-rack optional). 2) Given the soaring ticket prices to a NASCAR race, Obama needs to announce the formation of a fact-finding committee to study ways to reduce the admission price.
3) He needs to shuck that GQ look, get himself a stained, plain white t-shirt and roll up a pack of Camels (unfiltered) in the shoulder cuff. 4) Admit that he acted inappropriately toward his wife by backhanding her when she spoke without being spoken to, telling her that all wives needed that now and again. 5) Change his campaign slogan from "Yes we can," to "Yes we can drink beer at work." 6) Say he went to Harvard because he wasn't able to get into Chicago Technical College.
7) Hire a campaign staffer named Bubba.
James Studdard is an attorney. He may be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org.