I had absolutely no knowledge about the temporary parking, officer!

There's an old Watergate saying (it may go back further) that "the coverup is worse than the crime."

I guess I've been blogging too long to get terribly worked up over -- what did the Romney ad say? -- oh yes, "Fancy Fred, Five O'clock Fred, Flip-Flop Fred, McCain Fred, Moron Fred, Playboy Fred, Pro-Choice Fred, Son-of-a-Fred and Trial Lawyer Fred." Actually, when I saw it laid out like that, I started to laugh, because it smacked of desperation, and Mitt Romney has every reason to fear Fred Thompson. I also think that (unfortunately for Romney) Thompson might be another Teflon man like Reagan and Clinton. This is not to say that Teflon makes the man, only that if the man is there, the Teflon will make it awfully hard for anyone to unmake him. So I'm not terribly worried about Fred Thompson over this campaign smear job, although I agree with Ann Althouse that it's "better left to independent blogger types." (Especially the 7th grade variety.)

Whether Romney's campaign was involved with the ad is one thing. But might there be a coverup?

A spokesman for Republican presidential candidate Fred Thompson today blasted GOP rival Mitt Romney for a "half-baked cover-up attempt" in the case of an anti-Thompson website.

In a statement, Todd Harris called for an immediate apology from Romney and again demanded that the Romney campaign terminate anyone involved in the website's creation.

"This latest episode only serves to prove what many voters are already figuring out: Mitt Romney will do anything, say anything, smear any opponent and flip flop on any position in order to win," Harris said. "The American people in general and the Republican Party in particular deserve better than this."

Romney officials today blamed the web site on an employee of one the former Massachusetts governor's top consultants in South Carolina.

Romney spokesman Kevin Madden said the employee, Wesley Donehue, created the website phoneyfred.org without the approval of the campaign. Madden said the campaign ordered the site removed when they received calls from the media about it.

"The site has no direct affiliation to our campaign and we had no knowledge of its development," Madden said. "We discovered it was created by an individual who apparently parked the site temporarily on the company server space of a firm whose financial partner is a consultant to the campaign."

Huh?

An individual who apparently parked the site temporarily on the company server space of a firm whose financial partner is a consultant to the campaign? That's a real mouthful. It gives me a headache trying to make sense of it. I'm more interested at this point in whether they did it than in whether their fingerprints could be detected at the scene.

Glenn Reynolds links this writeup of the story, and also quotes an email from a friend who works in the Romney campaign (who Glenn knows and has no reason to doubt his truthfulness). There's just something about the convenient parking-of-the-site-temporarily-on-the-company-server-space-of-a-firm whose-financial-partner-is-a-consultant-who-had-absolutely-no-knowledge about-the-development-of-the-site-or-that-it-was-temporarily-parked-on-the-server that just plain makes my head spin. When people talk like that my first instinct is to start thinking like a lawyer. This causes post-traumatic stress, because of my legal background. And when I hear words which would be overwrought gobbledygook in normal conversation assembled like that in a political context, I tend to think that someone is trying to bamboozle me into blind acceptance of plausible deniability.

I'd rather wait till they're elected.

(At that point I have no choice.)

UPDATE: Thompson fights back! Glenn has a link to a kickass post about the Romney incident:

....Mitt Romney will do anything, say anything, smear any opponent and flip flop on any position in order to win. The American people in general and the Republican Party in particular deserve better than this."
Amen. Team Thompson telling it how it is.
If the Romney people did this, it's not the end of the world, as this is politics. But if they are trying to lie their way out of it, I think it's worse.

posted by Eric on 09.11.07 at 05:27 PM










Comments

LOL

M. Simon   ·  September 11, 2007 6:57 PM

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