I wouldn’t have thought so until this post about a new angle coming from the Obama campaign. Obama’s campaign has sent out a postcard that differentiates his position on Iraq from someone else’s, whom he doesn’t get around to naming, but we all know it’s Hillary because she’s the front-runner. She’s also evidently The Candidate Who Must Not Be Named. Here’s how Politico’s Mike Allen describes it.

Sen. Barack Obama (D-Ill.) takes a sharp shot at Sen. Hillary Clinton (D-N.Y.) in a colorful, oversized postcard being sent to Iowa voters on Tuesday.

His message of being a fresh, inspiring change has left him lagging in the polls as Clinton hammers home her experience.

So Obama’s word is now “judgment” — and he says his is better than hers on Iraq and Iran.

“Barack Obama is the only major candidate for president to oppose both the Iraq war from the very start and the Senate amendment that raises the risk of war with Iran.

“While others went along, Obama opposed Bush’s war plans,” the mailing charges in big letters under the address.

“Others”! That’s a sharp shot at Clinton, who has been on the defensive in Iowa for her Sept. 27 vote on a hawkish resolution calling on the Bush administration to declare Iran’s 125,000-member Revolutionary Guard Corps a foreign terrorist organization.

Since when is “others” a “sharp shot?” He doesn’t name her or call her something ugly, like “Cankles” or “Hilldebeast.” The words “Whitewater” and “billing records” and “Peter Paul” and “Norman Hsu” — her actual record, in other words — never come up. Just “others.” That’s so vague it could be a reference to Lost, fercryinoutloud. Here, by the way, is the sharp as a stick Obama attack. It’s just a picture of him with the text that Allen finds so sharp. If that’s as sharp as Obama’s going to get, well, I have a set of butter knives that’ll outslice him.


By way of contrast, here’s how Politico covered the remarks of Rep. Pete Stark. You remember him, right? He just finished up apologizing for saying that President Bush likes to send people to Iraq to get their heads blown off for his own amusement. Now that sounds like a sharp attack. Stupid, but sharply worded. The Politico didn’t see it that way though. Not to get Clintonian, but I guess this all comes down to what the meaning of “sharp” is.

House Republicans objected today to comments made by outspoken liberal Democratic Rep. Pete Stark of California on the Iraq war during debate on the override of President Bush’s veto of the children’s health program…

Earlier in the SCHIP debate, Stark had made other spirited remarks…

Responding promptly and harshly to Stark, the National Republican Congressional Committee declared he had “trampled on the sacrifice of our troops.”

So remarking that the president sends people off to violent deaths for his own jollies is “spirited,” but a vague reference to Hillary Clinton without actually naming her is “sharp.”

Lame, Politico. Very lame.