Remember back in the 2004 Presidential election when conservative groups (with the tacit approval of the Bush campaign) spent big money on anti-John Kerry ad campaigns that turned the reality of Kerry's Vietnam War service and hero status into a liability?
You know, they "creatively" re-told his war service story in a way that questioned if he was even present at the scene of some of his most heroic actions, if he did what he said he did, whether he really merited the awards he won and even raising questions about whether or not he actually just shot some local Vietnamese in the back by mistake. While the messages came from several fronts, the primary identified group behind it was Swift Boat Veterans for the Truth.
Essentially, the incessant ad campaign run by those conservative groups re-painted Kerry's image as a war hero into a dishonest, wimp liar. It raised enough questions about his service to minimize or even eliminate his edge over Bush in terms of military service and command experience. It turned a Kerry strength into a weakness.
So I ask the question...
In the 2012 election, how long will it take these same type of conservative groups to start turning President Obama's bin Laden victory...and all of the positives that the results say about Mr. Obama's guts and leadership abilities...into a liability? I ask "how long" because I am 100% convinced they'll try.
You know...Obama didn't really authorize the mission because the military was already on it (and besides Bush had already set things in motion), Obama didn't really give the go-ahead for the mission, he was playing golf while the mission was going on, he took credit for the actions of the Seal team, he should have captured bin Laden alive and not "had him killed," Obama "lied" or "was less than honest" about the details of the raid, bin Laden isn't actually dead (or even if he is) and the mission was a ruse to boost Obama's military credentials, and on and on an on.
Basically, I see a series of ads questioning Obama's handling of the bin Laden mission that raises questions about his honesty and leadership abilities. The fact that bin Laden was hunted down and killed on Obama's watch and based on his orders will, of course, be ignored. Again, this will be an attempt to turn perhaps Obama's biggest strength and victory into something that is used against him to effect.
Also, as a reminder, the U.S. Supreme Court last year decided that companies have the same First Amendment rights of free speech as human beings. So, they can spend as much as they want on political advertising now...and they will. Which side do you think companies will mostly be on - Democrat or Republican?