…and most other candidates for political office do too. For the past 45+ years, it’s been standard operating procedure also known as ‘doing what it takes to get elected.’
Barack Obama has ratcheted up his attacks on NAFTA, but a senior member of his campaign team told a Canadian official not to take his criticisms seriously, CTV News has learned.
Within the last month, a top staff member for Obama’s campaign telephoned Michael Wilson, Canada’s ambassador to the United States, and warned him that Obama would speak out against NAFTA, according to Canadian sources.
The staff member reassured Wilson that the criticisms would only be campaign rhetoric, and should not be taken at face value.
Don’t get me wrong, I’m not saying lying to get elected is okay. It’s not. But somewhere in the political playbook, this kind of thing isn’t defined as lying. It’s defined as nuance. It’s giving your potential voting constituency a taste of where your head is at. It’s about intentions, not action. The entire Obama campaign is built upon this framework.
So, am I shocked that Obama staffers are calling and warning Canadian officials ahead of time to take the rhetoric with a grain of salt? Not in the least. Obama’s not the first and he won’t be the last. It’s a lesson though to those of us who listen to speeches, political debates, and campaign propaganda. Always apply the proper filter, and count on a certain percentage of disappointed when your candidate is elected.
2008 Election, Barack Obama, Hillary Clinton, Politics, NAFTA, Canada, Mexico