Not quite as stupid as the subliminal-message accusations over the weekend but in the ballpark, and worthy of a Sean Wilentz follow-up piece at TNR on Team Obama’s race-baiting should his campaign dare to pick this up. From the swamps of dKos to, of all places, the politics blog at Fox News: Even if you believe Hillary would stoop to this sort of race-baiting, does anyone think the benefit she’d gain from it would outstrip the cost? How’d that work out vis-a-vis Bill’s Jesse Jackson comment in South Carolina? Watch the ad again, or just compare the side-by-side images in the frontpage screencap to see how marginal the difference is. He doesn’t look “blacker,” he looks grayish and enervated, as though he’s ill. Given the endless amount of ink that’s been spilled on him being the first black candidate with a legitimate shot at the White House, what does darkening his skin by 5% or whatever the variable is here do to motivate any racist that isn’t already motivated against him?

Answer: Nothing, but the left’s chomping at the bit to demagogue the hell out of the GOP on all matters racial in the general election, so Hillary will have to do for now. Or, of course, Rush Limbaugh, who committed the impardonable sin of waiting a few minutes to apologize for a caller’s comparison of a presidential candidate to a monkey. Ahem.

Update: Charles Johnson thinks it’s all attributable to video transfer artifacts.

Update: Here’s Limbaugh’s “Curious George” segment, first the exchange, then the apology.