How fitting that Chait would include a picture of Mayella Ewell in his Ashley Todd post. Because in the midst of the hubbub over Todd's a-big-black-Obama-supporting-mugger-cut-me story turning out to be a hoax, I can't help but wonder if the comparisons go beyond Todd's obvious deceit.

Sure, I believe it's entirely possible that Todd is disturbed enough to have beaten herself up in some misguided effort to help her political team--and not just because, from my perspective, anyone still supporting this GOP ticket must be slightly "off." (Only joking. Save your righteous indignation, Kristol.)  But it's just as possible that someone else actually did give the poor gal a beating, which she subsequently tried to cover up by scraping that B on her cheek and turning her personal suffering into a political morality tale. Certainly, there are still plenty of strange, unexplained details to this story. Or, to be more precise, Todd hasn't really explained anything other than she wasn't, in fact, assaulted by a seriously partisan black giant.  

Not having beaten myself up lately, I have no idea how hard it is to give oneself a shiner like Todd's. But in the midst of their annoyance, I do hope the police--or Todd's family, or her court-appointed therapist, or whoever--are at least considering the possibility that Todd was in part scrambling for a less humiliating way to explain how she wound up with a busted chiffarobe.   

--Michelle Cottle