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Welcome to The General Election

Barack Obama certainly hopes there are better days ahead. First, the words of Hillary Clinton and the other Democrats live on to haunt him thanks to the RNC. Then Tony Rezko is convicted on multiple counts, dominating much of the news. And Hillary gets to suck up the oxygen for the remainder of the week, with a final exit on Friday. Why not today? Why not Tuesday? Who knows. The VP search committee — yes, Hillary, we’ll put you on the list — is now set. But should the former head of Fannie Mae be on it? Does Caroline Kennedy care about moderate balance or ideological purity? We’ll find out.

This may strike some as a bit off-message. Not much high rhetoric. Somehow kissing the ring of Big Labor doesn’t quite jive with the notion of throwing out special interests. What has surprised some observers is that the McCain team seemed quite prepared, ready out of the box with the Democrats vs. Obama video, ready to challenge Obama to town hall meetings and firing on Wednesday on Iran and foreign policy. Weren’t they supposed to be low on organization? Perhaps someone was playing possum. And let’s not forget that the RNC, which is responsible for much of the response, is well-funded and integrated already into the McCain campaign.

Let’s see how Obama handles his first press avail when quizzed on Rezko, or how he deals with pesky reporters asking about his Iran policy reversals. Then we’ll know just how prepared he is for the next five months.



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