OK, bear with me–it’s my headline, but Patrick Ruffini’s analogy:
Much has been made in recent months of how both parties have been spinning their wheels in Washington. But if we know anything of George W. Bush, it is his ability to turn it around on the big plays, usually with a huge turnover late in the third quarter that suddenly shifts the momentum and leaves him in control during the critical fourth quarter.
Tonight, we may have witnessed just such a play.
To me, today feels a lot like July 26, 2004 felt. It was Day One of the Democratic Convention. We’d been hammered relentlessly for months on bad news from Iraq / faux economic pessimism. (It was a barrage of low-intensity attacks you only see when your adversary doesn’t have enough to defeat you outright on the battlefield — and they can work if not responded to decisively.) Though the bounce from Kerry’s selection of Edwards had largely petered out, analysts famously predicted a “glow” around the Democratic duo that would be worth “maybe fifteen points.” We were certainly bracing for the worst.
Then Kerry went and did this. And a few other little things like it had me wondering whether we weren’t witnessing the Mother of All Missed Opportunities. The post-Convention polls certainly bore this out.
To me personally, the first day of the Democratic Convention was the best day Republicans had had in months. In retrospect, I think it was a turning point. And things kept on turning, with Kerry’s Bad August, and a slam-bang convention in New York.
Once again, it’s the big play, and Democrats are punting. They’ve whipped their people up into a frenzy — and the President just put them in a room with no doors and no windows.
It’s too early for me to say with 100 percent certainty that he’s right, but Patrick definitely has an interesting analogy. It certainly brought back lots of memories of how crazy last August was.
(Via Jim Geraghty.)