This takes care of one of the two lies the left told last week to try to push this grand backfire out of the spotlight. “You’re only playing into MoveOn’s hands!” we were told, but it’s just as accurate to say that MoveOn played into ours. When you don’t have much of a record to run on, remind people what you’re running against. To wit:

Capitol Hill Republicans are getting a much-needed fundraising boost from a newspaper advertisement in which the liberal group accused Iraq war commander Gen. David H. Petraeus of lying, strategists say.

Republican candidates and party committees are frequently citing the ad in fundraising solicitations and campaign materials to attack Democratic opponents for not condemning the ad, which was published in the New York Times three weeks ago today.

While it’s too early to tell how much money Republicans have raised using the tactic, party spokesmen say it has been an effective fundraising tool.

“The [MoveOn ad] issue is very hot with our base right now,” said National Republican Senatorial Committee spokeswoman Rebecca Fisher. “We are using the controversy to reinforce our message that the Democrats in the Senate are beholden to the liberal wing of the party — and this is a perfect example of [their] pandering to the extreme wing.”

So much for lie #1. Lie #2 was the idea that partisan bombthrowing over tangential nonsense like this was a contrived distraction from the Iraq debate that was unworthy of space in the public discourse. A week later, after saturation coverage of the left screeching about Bill O’Reilly and now a week of screeching about Rush Limbaugh set to begin, how’s that second lie working out?

Exit question: Do we dare accuse the left of manufacturing a distraction? Whatever could they want to distract from?