So, John McCain has heeded his former chief strategist's advice and called out supporters who were engaging in over-the-top anti-Obama vitriol:
McCain was booed at a town-hall meeting here [in Lakeville, MN] when he rebuked a man who said he was "scared…to bring a child up" under an Obama presidency. "I have to tell you he is a decent person and a person that you do not have to be scared of as president of the United States," McCain said to audible disapproval.The man was one of nine who appealed to McCain to confront Obama more forcefully, several of them raising specific controversies dominating news, including Obama’s relationships with Bill Ayers and the group ACORN. McCain seized the microphone from the hands of a woman who called Obama "an Arab," and scolded her."He's a decent family man that I happen to have disagreements with on fundamental issues," McCain said, to scant approval.
Good for McCain. Problem is, the message he delivered in MN is fundamentally incompatible with the Obama-pals-around-with-terrorists line of attack that Sarah Palin has been making on the stump--and that the McCain makes in a new TV ad. So unless McCain's campaign changes its overall approach, it'll be hard to see his comments today as anything other than a symbolic show aimed at deflecting criticism.