'The John & Hillary Show'
Are Republicans hammering Hillary because they're too afraid of attacking each other? Or is it that they are hoping criticism of her somehow bolsters their own -- sometimes lacking -- conservative credentials?
Just in case we needed any more evidence that the Republican candidates are obsessed with Hillary Clinton, check out a new online game created by Sen. John McCain (R-Ariz.)
The game features two cartoonish depictions of McCain and Clinton standing behind podiums, and gives websurfers the change to answer questions about them.
"Which candidate proposed to spend $1 million of taxpayer money on a concert museum for Woodstock?" the first question asks. The answer choices are: Mitt Romney, Hillary Clinton, John Edwards and John McCain.
When Clinton's name is clicked, a yellow daisy sprouts out of her hair, she holds up the two-fingered peace sign and a bubble appears over her head with the words: "That's groovy, man."
The next question, predictably, asks: "Which candidate held Sen. Clinton accountable for attempting to waste taxpayer dollars on a museum for the "cultural and pharmaceutical event?"
When McCain's name is clicked, Clinton's arm extends out, holding a flaming wad of cash, and saying "Let's not talk about that."
As noted in today's story, McCain and his Republican rivals are increasingly using Clinton as a foil in their efforts to secure the GOP nomination.
The Republicans are hoping to tap into anti-Clinton fervor among the GOP base, which are the most likely voters in the coming caucuses and primaries.
But the fact remains that they are engaged at the moment in a contest that is supposed to be among Republicans. With 50 days to go, they've engaged in very little aggressive challenging of each other.
The first television ad by Rudy Giuliani, for example, is a positive piece about his record as mayor of New York. And former Massachusetts governor Mitt Romney, who has been airing ads for months, has yet to do an attack piece.
Those ads may come soon. But for the moment, the leading candidates for the Republican nomination appear content to let their voters judge them on how harsh they can be toward the former first lady.
--Michael D. Shear
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