It’s rather unexpected, to be honest, for both the candidate and the party to speak out against using Obama’s middle name, or any mis-construed photos, as an exploit for attacking him. I might have expected it a little from McCain, but not at all for the Republican National Committee. McCain has been calling for a fair and balanced (not the Fox News kind) campaign between the two. Which means to racist attacks, no mud-slinging (well, really bad mud-slinging), and no flat-out lies by the candidates and their campaign teams. If they both agree to that, then I guess the party behind each of them will agree to it as well.
With all that said, I totally expect the 527’s (click to find out what a 527 is) to make the most of Obama’s name and that photo. If they don’t, then I will be extremely surprised.
The R.N.C. spoke out against it, I suspect, because it turn back on them. It could create a sympathy vote for Obama. It could become a null-and-void issue with the voters if they use it so much that they get desensitised to it. It could turn people off the Republican party in an election that is all about independent and swing voters. But worst of all, it makes John McCain and the Republican party look petty – it looks like they can’t debate him or point out faults in terms of policy, and they look really weak. A candidate who is attacking a guy’s name, or a single photo of him, obviously has no platform to run and challenge with.
That’s why the 527’s come in handy – they can attack, and McCain and the Republicans can say “We have no control over them”, maybe even decry what the 527’s are saying. But the message will be out there, and unfortunately, it might even be heard. We’ll see how clean this campaign is come the end of voting day.