Fear and loathing on the campaign trail, July 2008
Saturday, August 9, 2008
July 2008 on the campaign trail will be remembered prominently for what people close to the campaign opined about the election. On both sides of the aisle a former presidential candidate made a statement demonized by the media. The media's coverage of the election was and became an issue that even the candidates discussed on the trail. The trends of the previous months were continued as another third party candidate rose and another influential election journalist ( ) died.
- Barack Obama's shift to the political center in light of his backing was documented by the media. It was noted that Obama had stated that he agreed with Republicans in backing a bill granting immunity to telecommunication businesses that participated in surveillance of terrorists and recognized that he agreed with the 's 5-4 split upon ideological lines to lift the in The move was also supported by Obama's remarks that he would "refine" his positions on the .
- Former Democratic presidential candidate stated in an interview during a commercial break that he believed Barack Obama was "talking down to black people" and that he would like to "cut his out." The comments were in response to Barack Obama's comments that "Any fool can have a child. That doesn’t make you a father." Jackson apologized to Obama and the campaign's spokesman stated that Obama "of course accepts Reverend Jackson's apology."
- satirical representation of rumors floating that Obama is secretly Muslim but both the Obama and McCain campaigns criticized the cover as "tasteless and offensive." magazine set off a firestorm of controversy when it released its July 21 edition with a cover portraying Barack Obama and his wife Michelle as . The publication claimed the cover was a
- Obama visited the Middle East and Europe later in the month on a Senatorial "fact finding" mission with fellow Senators and . Obama met with world leaders and discussed the American strategy in Iraq with General and drew large crowds including 200,000 at an event in . During the trip Obama articulated his support for an increase in the American forces in Afghanistan. The trip received an abundance of media coverage and was followed by anchors from America's top news networks.
- Virginia governor emerged as the frontrunner for the nomination for the Democratic Party according to sources within the Obama campaign. The source stated that Kaine "ranks very, very high on the shortlist" along with Senator of Indiana, Senator of Delaware and Kansas Governor .
- Third Parties
- Former Congresswoman Georgia won the nomination of the at the party's in Chicago. After winning the nomination McKinney proclaimed that "A vote for the Green Party is a vote for the movement that will turn this country right-side-up again." She is a vocal critic of the suggesting that it regarding the . McKinney selected hip hop artist and Green activist as her running mate. of
- Bob Barr reached 10% in a conducted in New Hampshire in July although Barr had not yet reached the number of signatures required to be included on the ballot in the state. Barr emphasized the promising results while campaigning and stated that he will continue his fight to be included on the ballot in all 50 states. nominee
- Comments made by Bob Barr that the government "has to do something" to help and in light of the were instantly criticized by presidential candidate of the little known . Jay gained some media attention by claiming that Barr was wrong describing him as a " " and stating that the government should "let free markets flow." Jay's comments are representative of some Libertarian dissatisfaction with Barr, which fractured the in May.
- Similar to the previous summer, John McCain reshuffled his campaign staff: the biggest move being his replacement of campaign manager with 's associate as the controller of campaign operations. The moves gave indications of a possible upheaval in the campaign but these charges were denied by advisor who stated that McCain was simply "ramping up" his campaign. It was also revealed that McCain planned to release a series of advertisements aimed at voters in the midwest.
- Economic advisor for John McCain, former Senator stated that America was a nation of "whiners" who are in a state of "mental ." McCain countered that he "strongly disagree[d]" with the statements and that "Phil Gramm does not speak for me. I speak for me." After months of being touted as a possible in a McCain administration, when asked what role Gramm might play in light of his recent comments McCain remarked that he "would be in serious consideration for , although I’m not sure the citizens of would welcome that."
- John McCain criticized Barack Obama for his position on Iraq as the Democratic candidate visited the nation. He stated that Obama was wrong for formulating a plan for the future of the nation before assessing the conditions on the ground. In an interview with , McCain stated that he "would much rather lose a campaign than lose a war. Senator Obama has indicated that by his failure to acknowledge the success of the [in Iraq], that he would rather lose a war than lose a campaign."
- Louisiana governor announced on that he's "got the job [he] want[s]" and that he's "not going to be the vice presidential nominee" although insiders stated that Jindal would take the job if asked. This came as McCain praised Jindal and Minnesota governor as "the future of the Republican Party." The two along with Florida governor and former Massachusetts governor Mitt Romney are said to be the top prospects to be McCain's .
- McCain released an ad late in July that gave his campaign more media exposure. The ad described Obama as "the biggest celebrity in the world" and compared the Senator to and . It was later reported that at the end of the month McCain was a "significant or dominant factor" in 74% of campaign coverage compared to 81% for Obama, perhaps as a result of the new ad.
- "Jesse Jackson apologizes for comment about Barack Obama" — Wikinews, July 11, 2008
- "Fear and loathing on the campaign trail, June 2008" — Wikinews, July 1, 2008
- "Fear and loathing on the campaign trail, May 2008" — Wikinews, May 30, 2008
- Michael Gillespie. "Drive-by Cover Cartoon: The New Yorker Magazine Whacks the Obamas" — , August 6, 2008
- Judson Berger and Bonney Knapp. "McCain Gets His Money’s Worth Out of Paris, Britney Ad" — , August 6, 2008
- "Governor Kaine seen as able by Obama" — , July 30, 2008
- Caren Bohan. "Obama wraps up foreign tour with London visit" — , Jul 25, 2008
- Mark Memmott and Jill Lawrence. "What's new: McCain says Obama would rather lose the war than the campaign" — , July 23, 2008
- Mark Hayward. "Libertarian Bob Barr campaigns in Manchester" — , July 23, 2008
- "Charles Jay concurs with LP, disagrees with Barr: ‘Let Fannie/Freddie fail’" — , July 16, 2008
- Jeff Mason. "McCain praises Pawlenty, Jindal as VP talk sizzles" — , July 23, 2008
- Jeffry Scott. "McKinney wins Green Party nomination" — , July 12, 2008
- John Bentley. "McCain Response To Gramm Flap: Exile Him To Belarus" — , July 10, 2008
- Kristin Jensen. "Obama's Voting Record Complicates His Shift to Center (Update2)" — , July 8, 2008
- Suzanne Goldenberg. "McCain backers roll out new ads as campaign team reshuffled" — , July 4, 2008
Fear and Loathing on the Campaign Trail... is a monthly article about the campaign events during the past month. The title is based on the series of articles written by journalist