Progressive Media USA unveiled its first television ad of the campaign season last week, noting the striking similarities between John McCain and George W. Bush, down to the word-for-word talking points they share.
This week, PMUSA unveiled its second spot, a web video that might make it difficult for McCain to accuse anyone of elitism, which Logan featured earlier today.
As Matt Yglesias put it, "If you're looking for an elitist in the presidential race you might want to look at the super-rich guy who made his fortune by marrying an heiress ... And of course the couple still won't release the part of their tax returns that has all the money on it."
A perfect example of McCain's tone-deafness to the concerns of real Americans are the speeches he gave in Youngstown, Ohio, this afternoon. First he touted free trade in front of a failing Ohio factory, urging Americans to reject the "siren song of protectionism"
"A person learns along the way that if you hold on — if you don't quit no matter what the odds — sometimes life will surprise you," McCain said in a speech at Youngstown State University after meeting the five remaining workers at Fabart, a steel-fabricating factory that had more than 100 employees a few years ago.
Then likened the hardships Americans are facing today and the high level of foreclosures to his having to carry his own bags and fly coach in the days when everyone had written off his campaign. Bear in mind, he's speaking in a state where there are 144,000 houses facing foreclosure today. In Youngstown, with a population of only 82,000, there are 770 houses that have been possessed by the bank and 634 house in pre-foreclosure. There are 1,171 bankruptcy filings in Youngstown, bankruptcies that now threaten the homes of those Ohioans, thanks to the legislation that McCain championed in 2005. The Executive Director of the Ohio Democratic Party thought that McCain bore a resemblance to a pop culture icon known for being out of touch with how most Americans live.
"John McCain is the Paris Hilton of politics because he's so out-of-touch with the problems facing average families," said Doug Kelly, Executive Director of the Ohio Democratic Party.
The difference between Youngstown and McCain couldn't be starker:
· Youngstown is a working class city; John McCain is one of the richest members of the Senate.
· McCain's plans shred the safety net for Youngstown; McCain's safety net is a rich heiress wife worth $100 million.
"McCain's attempt to compare a poorly-managed campaign budget to the increasing demands on a family's budget shows the bubble McCain lives in," said Kelly.
Taking a step back, I'd just add that it appears the efforts to "define" McCain are taking shape -- he's the old, angry, rich Bush clone who frequently gets confused about policy details. Kind of like Grandpa Simpson with Mr. Burns' checkbook.