The issue of offshore drilling presents a conundrum for Obama. History tells us that if, during a political campaign, you try to explain a complicated position - why offshore drilling is unwise even in an era of high gas prices, how it won't affect current gas prices, and how it's unlikely to have any material impact on future gas prices - you lose the war of the sound bite. So Obama has offered nuance to those who he hopes can understand it, while trying to remove the issue from the table by saying that under the right circumstances he would support lifting the moratorium on offshore drilling.
In contrast, the Repubican attack machine has been in overdrive. Remember how a month or so ago they were perpetuating the lie that Cuba was drilling off of our shore? They're eagerly suggesting, knowing their claim to be entirely false, that offshore drilling or ANWR drilling will somehow lower gas prices. They want very much to keep this issue on the table, hoping that fabricated claims, accusations and sound bites will prevail. So out comes a McCain shill:
On policy, [potential McCain V.P. pick Tim] Pawlenty said he doubted Obama's statement Friday that he would support expanded offshore oil drilling if it were the key to a compromise on comprehensive energy policy.Why is this even news?
"He's put so many contingencies around it that I wonder - in fact I question - whether he would do it at all," Pawlenty said in an interview. "It may be a way for him to gain favor during the election, and tube it later because all the contingencies weren't met."
Meanwhile, on the "race card" front, another shill crawls out of the woodwork:
Sen. Lindsey Graham (R-S.C.) said Barack Obama is "absolutely" injecting the issue of race into the presidential campaign on Sunday morning, and twice calling it "a lie" for the Democratic presidential nominee to claim otherwise.Is there anybody out there with half (or more) of a brain who believes that Obama gains from having race be an issue in the campaign? If that's the case, as with offshore drilling, why is McCain sending out an army of shills to try to keep the issue front and center?
“To say that Barack Obama did not intentionally inject the idea of his name and his race is a lie,” Graham said in an interview on "Fox News Sunday."
Rather than asking that question, for the most part the media (as you might expect) plays along. Or observes, "This is horrible, but this isn't the true voice of the wise and honorable John McCain."