The question facing the Obama campaign has been around for quite a while: ignore trashy rumors (and possibly allow them to fester unchallenged) or debunk them (and possibly bring added attention to the lies, inadvertently lending them credence). As Time’s Karen Tumulty explained, Obama is going with the latter with a new site called, “Fight the Smears.”
Obama is enlisting his millions of supporters to help him hunt down and quash these stories, just as those supporters helped him turn his insurgent campaign into a history-making juggernaut. […]
Though the latest and most poisonous rumors about Michelle were ginned up by a pro-Clinton website, Obama knows that — notwithstanding John McCain’s pledge that his own campaign will not engage in smears — more rumors can be expected in a general-election campaign. Trying to kill them with oxygen and openness is a risky approach. But Obama is attempting to find the humor — and the votes — by taking the rumors head-on.
It may be risky, but all things being equal, on everything from Obama's religion to his birth certificate to Larry Sinclair, sunshine has to be the best disinfectant, isn't it?