I meant to comment on this excellent (and disturbing) Jim Rutenberg piece in yesterday's Times but didn't get around to it before the debate. Anyway, the point of the piece is to scrutinize "Hannity's America," the Sunday night "opinion show" starring your favorite right-wing radio host cum Fox News commentator. It turns out that a recent episode called “Obama & Friends: The History of Radicalism" probed Obama's relationship with Bill Ayers by allowing various right-wing cranks to air their unsubstantiated speculations and pontifications. The chief crank in charge was a perennial political candidate named Andy Martin, whose most recent claim to fame was failing to receive the backing of the Florida GOP in a state senate race on account of his alleged anti-Semitism.

Much of this may have already been familiar to you (though it wasn't to me). What really makes the Rutenberg piece worth your while is the final paragraph, in which Martin comments on the charge that a committee affiliated with one of his campaigns wanted “to exterminate Jew power in America,” according to documents it allegedly generated. 

OK,  so take it away, Andy Martin:

Mr. Martin had previously said the documents were forged, and again denied their authenticity on Monday. He also denied harboring anti-Semitic sentiment, saying “it’s peripheral, it draws you away from the issue.”

Got that? Martin feels aggrieved that his alleged anti-Semitism is diverting people from his attempts to divert them from the issues at hand in this election. I love it! Quite possibly the best kicker to a news story I've ever read.

--Noam Scheiber