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The GOP better hope and pray that Obama screws up, because if he succeeds they will need to get comfortable; because it will be decades before they get another chance, if he succeeds in realigning the electorate. If he succeeds, it'll be like FDR all over again.

Avinash Tyagi

Cleveland, OH

Oct 24 2008 - 12:43am

Web Letter

What has become of free speech in this country? And why are advertisements raising questions about Senator Obama's connections to questionable people wrong or off limits? The "Swift Boat" attack on John Kerry was wrong because it was based upon false allegations, not because it attacked John Kerry. Because Barack Obama is such an unknown, with little or no track record to examine, it is especially important to inform the public of the kinds of people who helped launch his political career and with whom he associated with over the years. This is especially imperative in a climate where the media appear to have little interest in reporting on or probing these areas. We run a grave risk by attacking truthful advertisements.

David W. Bertoni

Yarmouth, ME

Oct 23 2008 - 11:24pm

Web Letter

I totally disagree with the author. The Swift-boat ads worked for many reasons, first being numbers. Most Americans would clearly place their trust in 260 or so veterans over a small handful of Kerry loyalists. Another huge factor was the Dick Cavett tape of John O'Neil attacking Kerry some thirty years prior, proving this was not the invention of Bush and Rove and was not something invented for the campaign. Lastly was Kerry's defense, claiming the others never served with him. These boats serve side by side within yards of each other. They operate as a unit and together on missions. Then Kerry used as a defense John McCain's statements. John McCain was in POW camp and wasn't there. Bottom line. There were lots of fishy things about Kerry's story and still many questions remain. But as you defend this domestic terrorist, just remember. Eventually the issue will blow up in your face.

Dennis Brown

Manalapan , NJ

Oct 23 2008 - 11:23pm

Web Letter

Good analysis. But you overlook one critical variable.

The length of the Democratic nomination process forced the Republican attack machine to hold fire until it had a clear target. And the vigor with which Senator Clinton attacked Senator Obama's weaknesses meant that by the time the right got a hold of them, they would be old news.

So the fact that Obama is escaping the worst that the Republican dirty tricks squad can offer is, to a significant degree, a result of his battle with Senator Clinton. President Obama will owe Senator Clinton--big time!

Walter Baber

California State University, Long Beach<br />San Diego, CA

Oct 23 2008 - 4:54pm

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