Since taking office President Obama and his team have been through a litany of Republican targets before the current crusade against Karl Rove, Ed Gillespie and the U.S. Chamber of Commerce. Going back to the early weeks of the Obama administration, Power Play can detect a shifting and sometimes obscure demonology of the president’s political foes.
Lots of Republicans have criticized President Obama or Democratic policies over the past two years, but the administration has been selective about deciding which criticism to answer, and which to not elevate by response.
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Witness how the administration has treaded carefully around Sarah Palin questions since Robert Gibbs’ bringing up her “death panels” accusation in August of 2009. Gibbs took a Palin tweet and made it into the buzzword for the long, angry months leading up to the eventual passage of the president’s health care law. That’s not good branding.
While Gibbs would mock Palin five months later for writing notes on her hand, questions about the former Alaska governor are now mostly met by those in the administration with words like “interesting” or “fascinating.” Obama campaign manager David Plouffe did suggest in a strategy call with reporters last week that Palin was Obama’s preferred 2012 foe, but the administration has been at pains not to create a Obama-Palin rivalry.
The same can be said of other Republicans who take shots at the administration: Gov. Bobby Jindal of Louisiana during the battle over oil spill response, Gov. Chris Christie of New Jersey and the fight over federal funding for schools, Gov. Rick Perry of Texas and Obama restrictions on the oil industry, and even Gov. Jan Brewer on the subject of illegal immigration.
Read More: by Chris Stirewalt, Fox News