I had always had my suspicions that the real problem for us was the terrorism issue. Kerry’s anti-war past and the mere fact that he was a Democrat fit into an image of weakness that is almost impossible to break. That’s why he rightly emphasized his war hero status and why Rove called in the swift boat liars to tear it down. What they wanted to do was get that image of Kerry the hero out of people’s minds and the image of Kerry the effete liberal planted firmly in its place.
Kerry did a better job of overcoming that obstacle, and the more intractable obstacle of being a Democrat during a national security crisis, than anyone had a right to expect. He almost pulled it off. If he had he would have been able to banish the image of the Democratic weakling as effectively as Clinton banished the fiscal irresponsibility label. Too bad.
Digby’s right. We keep hearing that “moral values” were the top issue for 20 percent of voters. Well, what about the other 80 percent?