It Will Happen
Taegan Goddard links this National Journal interview with Republican hit man Mark McKinnon, the one-time Democrat who signed on with Bush in 1998 and is now, in the words of digby, Karl Rove's "most devoted sycophant." McKinnon now works for John McCain, but reiterated an earlier statement that if Barack Obama is the Democratic nominee, he will not work on the campaign against him.
Well, this goes back to a memo that I wrote to the campaign when I came aboard more than a year and a half ago, and I simply let them know that I had spent time with Obama and read his book and I like the guy. I think he has strong character and a fascinating life story, and I disagree with him fundamentally on issues like Iraq and trade and a number of others. But I just flashed forward to the improbable scenario, at that time seemingly improbable, that John McCain and Barack Obama might face off against one other. And I just told them at the time that I thought that I would be uncomfortable being on the front lines -- being as aggressive as you need to be in a presidential campaign -- and not only that I would be uncomfortable, but that it would be bad for the campaign, and that if that circumstance were to come to be, that I would just take a step to the sidelines and continue to support John McCain 100 percent and be No. 1 fan and cheerleader. But just kind of take myself out of the front lines.
Now, some might misinterpret this as a hint of a whiff of an inkling of a vague stirring of a conscience in McKinnon, but it really tells us something else. Because McKinnon had no problem working on Bush's sleazy campaign against Al Gore. And McKinnon had no problem being part of the campaign the swiftboated John Kerry. And since we know that swiftboating is really just the modern term for Nixonian ratfucking, we know that McKinnon unashamedly follows in the finest tradition of Republican smear merchants. And he will happily participate in ratfucking Hillary Clinton, should she be the nominee.
So, what does it say that McKinnon won't participate in a campaign against Barack Obama? It says that McKinnon knows what will come. That's what he's really telling us. He won't be a part of it, but the ratfucking will happen. And it will be as nasty as anything the Republicans did to Michael Dukakis, Bill Clinton, Al Gore, or John Kerry. Because it's what the Republicans do. They can't win on the issues, so they try to destroy the people. No matter which Democrat wins the nomination, be prepared.