Off Limits?

In 2000, John McCain took the New Hampshire primary and was favored to win in South Carolina. Had he succeeded, he would likely have thwarted the presidential aspirations of George W. Bush and become the Republican nominee. But Bush strategist Karl Rove came to the rescue with a vicious smear tactic.

Rove invented a uniquely injurious fiction for his operatives to circulate via a phony poll. Voters were asked, "Would you be more or less likely to vote for John McCain...if you knew he had fathered an illegitimate black child?" This was no random slur. McCain was at the time campaigning with his dark-skinned daughter, Bridget, adopted from Bangladesh.

It worked. Owing largely to the Rove-orchestrated whispering campaign, Bush prevailed in South Carolina and secured the Republican nomination. The rest is history--specifically the tragic and blighted history of our young century. It worked in another way as well. Too shaken to defend himself, McCain emerged from the bruising episode less maverick reformer and more Manchurian candidate...

ST. PAUL, Minnesota (CNN) -- Bristol Palin, the 17-year-old daughter of Sarah Palin, is pregnant and will keep the baby and marry the baby's father, the Republican vice presidential candidate said Monday. Bristol Palin, a senior in high school, is about five months along, in her second trimester...

Reacting to the news, Sen. Barack Obama said firmly that families are off-limits in the campaign for president.

"Let me be as clear as possible, I think people's families are off-limits, and people's children are especially off-limits. This shouldn't be part of our politics. It has no relevance to Gov. Palin's performance as governor or her potential performance as a vice president."

Barrak Obama

...at least the family is off limits to the Democrats. How about the Republicans?

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