As Obama's very big adventure gets underway in Denver, he has a problem.
Lots of problems, actually.
First, Obama appears to be prompter-dependant. The story that he cannot string together coherent arguments away from a prompter surfaced on Thrusday and Rush gave it huge legs. Now even the MSM will be watching to see if The One is using a virtual cheat sheet on the road.
Then there's the lingering triple play of scandals: Obama's vote and speech against the Born Alive Infant Protection Act that stuns and repulses even moderate pro-choicers; his ties to Bill Ayers and the ongoing cover-up of the documents surrounding that relationship by the University of Illinois; and of course now that houses are at the top of the news cycle, the Obamas' sweetheart house deal with crooked financier and Obama mentor Tony Rezko. That's ten weeks worth of scandal floated in one day. And inquiring minds want to know if there's more Illinois State Senate audio where the Born Alive Act sound came from.
Then yesterday, Obama praises the "vastly superior" infrastructure of China. Again, off-prompter means over the cliff with Senator Empty Suit. Central planning and near-slave labor can accomplish such wonderful things!
Given this sort of week, which followed three similar weeks and poll numbers falling faster than John Edwards' chances of being a key Obama surrogate, it was to be expected that the flailing candidate would grab for John McCain's hesitation at knowing how many houses he owned.
To which Team McCain quite rightly replied: At least the McCains paid for their houses, which invites the MSM to --finally-- take a close look at the Rezko-Obama deal and the long relationship behind it.
All of which sets the stage for Obama's big week in Denver.
He'll be on prompter and very well rehearsed, which means he'll get a bump.
But what will speaker after speaker say about energy and the cost of gas (and heating oil come the winter)? The price at the pump is still the number one issue in the country, and speaker after speaker is going to urge tire inflation?
Americans also have turned a corner on nuclear power. Solid majorities know we need nukes which can be built quickly versus windmills that may or may not be able to be built in sufficient numbers (with sufficient back-up infrastructure) to add some capacity to our grid. Democrats can't urge serious exploration, so they will obfuscate, and new media will be around to listen and react.
And in the background, playing again and again, McCain's "The One" ads, which are among the best ever produced by a presidential campaign. Using light humor to deflate a Rushmore-sized ego built on a Alfred E. Neuman resume was a brilliant stroke that sent Obama reeling and from which he hasn't yet recovered. A mass-rally to chanting thousands isn't going to help either.
Obama was supposed to be 20 points ahead coming out of Denver. He'll get a bounce, but then its back on the trail and off the prompter. Exciting times ahead for the Dalibama.