The Note: Scare Tactics from McCain, Palin

By Hope Ditto

Oct 24, 2008 8:44am

ABC News’ Rick Klein reports in Friday’s Note:

Which represents the biggest threat to Sen. John McCain?

His running mate . . . 

His staff . . .

Elites . . . 

Wallets . . .

The fact that Sen. Barack Obama will get MORE coverage while far from any battleground state . . .

An ad environment that’s past the saturation point (or is that a good thing?) . . .

Read the rest of The Note — and get all the latest on the 2008 election, Congress, the White House and the wide world of politics every day — from Rick Klein by bookmarking this link.

McCain won’t have Obama money to put behind it — but the message in his latest ad is as sharp as they come, and as sharp as he’s likely to get (and hits while Obama is visiting grandma, no less). 

We hear Sen. Joe Biden’s words, and we see tanks, ships, marching terrorists, Chavez, Ahmadinejad — then a cut to black: “It doesn’t have to happen. Vote McCain.” (It’s 3 am, and we think we’re meant to smell daisies.) 

There’s not far to go beyond this — and plenty of questions about whether this is too late, if not too little, or too irrelevant (Dow futures down 550 points Friday morning).

We’re about to find out if there’s a way to still frighten voters about Obama (and between taxes, experiences, and national security — McCain hopes there are many ways). If nothing else, the new tack scratches an itch in the party base — but McCain needs it to do more than that at this stage.

Friday brings a new message from Gov. Sarah Palin, too — her first policy speech of the campaign (!), calling for greater support for special-needs children (and attacking Obama on taxes). (A better story to tell than her “Troopergate” deposition Friday.)

Plus — pushback on the clothing story: “That is not who we are. . . . That whole thing is just, bad!” Palin tells the Chicago Tribune’s Jill Zuckman. “Oh, if people only knew how frugal we are.” 

Zuckman: “ ‘It’s kind of painful to be criticized for something when all the facts are not out there and are not reported,’ said Palin, saying the clothes are not worth $150,000 and were bought for the Republican National Convention. Still, she has been wearing pricey clothes at campaign events this fall. She said they will be given back, auctioned off or sent to charity. Most of them, she said, haven’t even left the belly of her campaign plane.”

Continue reading today’s Note by clicking HERE.

ABC News’ Hope Ditto contributed to this report.

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