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War Of Words

Noam, I don't quite know what to make of the Clinton campaign's outrage over Obama's borrowed rhetoric. This strikes me as incredibly thin stuff for a nearly hour-long conference call. Perhaps it's just a sign of how difficult it is to bash a guy with a short political career, but there's a whiff of desperation here.

The only way I can make sense of it, then, is to believe it's really about something larger. That the subtext is a fuller comparison between Obama and Patrick. An attempt to point the media to the example of a black Democrat who campaigned with grand and inspiring rhetoric--Patrick even used the slogan "Yes, we can"--and then turned out to be something of a dud in office. On the call Clinton spokesman Howard Wolfson denied that this is the real message here. But I suspect otherwise. It'll be interesting to see how many broader Obama-Patrick comparisons trickle into MSM coverage of this flap.

Link via Ben Smith. Photo: AP

--Michael Crowley