As is to be expected the Republican National Committee put out a statement today which called president elect Barack Obama’s statement about arrested Illinois Gov. Rod Blagojevich, “insufficient at best.”
Obama made a brief statement about Blagojevich after meeting with Al Gore in Chicago that said in part, “I had no contact with the governor or his office so I was not aware of what was happening. As I said it’s a sad day for Illinois. Beyond that I don’t think it’s appropriate for me to comment.” Even though Obama’s statement was pretty standard fare, the RNC is still trying to raise questions about Obama’s character.”
RNC Chairman Mike Duncan released a statement that said, “Leaders of both political parties have a responsibility to clearly condemn the actions by Governor Rod Blagojevich as alleged by federal prosecutors today. Americans expect strong leadership, but President-elect Barack Obama’s comments on the matter are insufficient at best. Given the President-elect’s history of supporting and advising Governor Blagojevich, he has a responsibility to speak out and fully address the issue.”
I really don’t know what the RNC is trying to accomplish by putting out a statement that connects Obama and Blagojevich. The election is over and Obama is the president elect. The facts are that there is no relationship between the arrested governor and the president elect, but this doesn’t seem to be stopping the GOP from fighting a campaign that ended over a month ago. There is a pattern of blame Obama in all of the statements that the RNC has put out in the transition period.
What these types of statements tell us is that the RNC has learned nothing from their defeats in the last two elections. They are still trying to avoid purposing alternatives to issues by sticking to the politics of division. If the Republicans want to rebuild their party, they have to move past the political model that they have used for the past 15 years. They need to concentrate on issues, and get away from the character attacks that have been a GOP staple tactic.
If Obama is a successful president, the RNC is setting itself up for another electoral disaster. Republicans don’t seem to have gotten the point that people are tired of gridlock politics. The point of these statements is to try to undermine Obama’s popularity, but calling Obama a supporter and advisor to Blagojevich is a stretch at best, and at worst a lie. This is the same argument that Republicans tried to use to make the Obama-Rezko connection. It didn’t work then, and it won’t work now.