"jannelson," a blogger at Red State, has an excellent pulling-it-all-together post on Senator Daschle's controversial ad showing him hugging President Bush headlined "Daschle: The politics of hugs." Excerpt:
Hugging Bush? Hugging Bush? How silly is that?
The Bush campaign has called for Daschle to pull the spot, in a smartly worded piece.
Look, Tom, no one buys it. Media, including the blogs, have evolved enough that you can no longer make laughable claims about supporting the president in South Dakota, while throttling his priorities in Washington. Accountability has arrived.
Accountability? Well, the RSCC has called upon Daschle to pull his ads, because they pretend to represent a Bush endorsement for the Senate minority leader. The release is mild, well-crafted.
Meanwhile, the Thune campaign has released a Public Opinion Strategies poll that shows Thune up on Daschle by 50-48 percent. I've worked with POS before, one of the best polling firms, and they're solid. There's no benefit in misrepresenting the numbers.
In short, Daschle is on the run. He's been outed as a left-wing Senator in Washington, whose wife makes millions as a lobbyist, and the voters have tired of the game.