“The senior staff believes the media is committed to seeing us win this thing”

This is a real take-it-for-what-it’s-worth, from the American Spectator’s “Washington Prowler” column:

According to a Kerry campaign source, senior campaign advisers tasked two Washington-based campaign staffers to vet the recently published Unfit for Command.

“The purpose was to compare what that book had with what we had on file from Senator Kerry,” says the campaign source, who said that the research project developed more than 75 instances where Kerry’s recollections, previous remarks, or writings conflicted with the book’s reporting.

“We took some of the most glaring examples, like the Christmas in Cambodia story, and presented them to senior staff, and we assume that those things were put in front of Senator Kerry,” says the source. “We haven’t heard a word about it. All we were told is that it was being taken care of.”

The campaign source said that the book was not considered a “serious” problem for the campaign, because, “the media wouldn’t have the nerve to come at us with this kind of stuff,” says the source. “The senior staff believes the media is committed to seeing us win this thing, and that the convention inoculated us from these kinds of stories. The senior guys really think we don’t have a problem here.”

The Prowler, although always a hoot to read, strikes me as kind of a “Debka for politics,” meaning it runs a lot of anonymously-sourced juicy stuff that sounds really interesting, but rarely pops up anywhere else, or pans out in the long term. It’s often “too good to check,” as they say in the journalism biz (who the heck in the Kerry campaign would ever say that kind of thing to the Spectator?).

I’d file this one under that general rule of thumb… but the last paragraph sure rings true, doesn’t it?

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19 Responses to ““The senior staff believes the media is committed to seeing us win this thing””

  1. Cybrludite Says:

    “The senior guys really think we don’t have a problem here.”

    We should be so lucky that they think that.That’s the sort of opposing mindset I’d pray for if I weren’t an athiest…

  2. jay white Says:

    Let’s assume this is true. How, then, will the Kerry campaign react to the SBVT’s next commercial–surely to be about Christmas in Cambodia? Given the (admittedly grudging and scant) publicity the MSM has afforded the SBVT so far, hasn’t the predicate still been laid to put out spots that concentrate on the “problem areas” and for the media react to them?

    If this is true, it is naive and should give BC ’04 a lot of reasons for optimism.

  3. jay white Says:

    Whoa, an addendum to my above post.

    If the Kerry campaign anticipated the Christmas in Cambodia exposure, why would they have initially denied the senator ever said such a thing? Wouldn’t they have known there was a paper trail from here to the Mekong?

    Given the above, either this is the most inept campaign in history or they truly believe they can spoon feed the mass media anything they want.

  4. PapayaSF Says:

    either this is the most inept campaign in history or they truly believe they can spoon feed the mass media anything they want

    Could be both!

  5. Mike M Says:

    Further edivence (if true) that the Kerry campaign is in dire straits.

    This staffer says nothing about the merits of the Swift Boat Vets story, he’s only commenting on the factors that would reduce its impact. What the comment admits indirectly is that the charges are a serious problem unless covered up and ignored by the media.

    They’re also fooling themselves if they think Kerry’s underwhelming convention speech made him invulnerable on military issues.

    For people working to get someone elected to be President of the United States, the complacency, hubris, and laissez-faire attitude of these staffers about their candidate’s history and image are shocking. I could do a better job…in all seriousness.

  6. Joe Says:

    I already emailed cnn and asked why they were not covering it.

  7. aaron Says:

    I do get the feeling that Fox cut a deal for convention access.

  8. ed Says:

    Hmm.

    Well here’s something. Evidently the Democrats are filing with the FEC to get the group shut down. The cause? The SwiftVets are being accused of using **SOFT MONEY** in their ads.

    Now this is surreal. Hasn’t MoveOn.org, ACT and a host of other Democrat 527 groups spent about $100 million dollars in soft money in the last 6 months???

    And they’re complaining about $500k? Or rather they’re claiming that the amount is $500k.

    These people have no ethics whatsoever. I’m going over to SwiftVets and donate another $100. These people need to be smacked and smacked hard.

  9. Beldar Says:

    Perma-linkless Jim Geraghty on NRO’s “The Kerry Spot” (08/10 03:56PM) sez that the Prowler quote is a fake, but offers up another intriguing quote in its stead. Did he mean “Faust” instead of “Freud,” I wonder?

  10. Hugh Says:

    Jim Geraghty, who runs the “Kerry Spot” on NRO, has posted the following:

    UPDATE: I ran this past my guy at the Kerry campaign, who’s been honest and reliable with me in the past, and he says this didn’t happen. His words: “This smooth talking ‘source’ is clearly a fiction. Seems more like a conservative’s paranoid conspiratorial central casting image of what Democrats must talk like about our Freudian bargain with the media.”

    http://www.nationalreview.com/kerry/kerryspot.asp

    I am firmly on the “swiftvets are a major story that deserves to be covered” side of things, but I think Will’s suspicions about this particular bit are correct.

  11. Sandy P Says:

    NRO says No.

  12. ronnie schreiber Says:

    Hugh, shouldn’t he have said Faustian bargain? I don’t know what a Freudian bargain is.

  13. Ripper Says:

    Here’s the microfilm of Kerry’s Senate report on his 1991 Cambodia visit, which mentions his previous “visits” in the intro.

    The relevant part is on page 1
    “… During the war, military operations had carried me throughout many of the waterways and coast lines of southern Vietnam and even, occasionally, into Cambodia. “

  14. The Key Monk Says:

    Beware quotes that sound too good

    Vodkapundit’s Will Collier semi-bought it. National Review Online’s Jim Geraghty did not, and his own Kerry source debunks the quote (scroll down to 8-10 at 3:56 pm):

    I ran this past my guy at the Kerry campaign, who’s been honest and reliable with …

  15. John Says:

    The way I see it, between the Primaries and the General Election the Kerry campaig, DNC and assorted 527’s will be spending close to half a BILLION dollars trying to make Kerry President. (I’m talking about the money Kerry spent to get the nomination, DNC money, Kerry’s presidential Campaign funds, Soros’ Media Matters and the assorted smaller groups such as ACT and MoveOn).

    I think they are looking at this huge expenditure and they believe they simply cannot lose. There is this unchallenged mantra that money wins elections, but they have it wrong- Lack of money loses elections, but outspending your opponent is no guarantee, and it absolutely is NOT a substitue for a good candidate with a solid message.

    Half A Billion Dollars. And they are going to lose. The media is going to be examining this one for decades.

  16. Hugh Says:

    Ronnie:

    The quote is Freudian, but it must mean Faustian – I had never heard of a Freudian bargain either.

  17. McGehee Says:

    Half A Billion Dollars. And they are going to lose. The media is going to be examining this one for decades.

    And as with so many things, they’ll come to a completely wrong and unsupportable conclusion.

  18. jack Says:

    A Freudian bargain? Your mother for a cigar, perhaps (or is that a Clintonian bargain?).

  19. Les Jones Blog Says:

    Test

    Testing a template change that affects trackback pings. link link2…

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