Controversial Delaware Republican Senate nominee Christine O'Donnell has released her first television ad and it's an instant classic, though not in the good way. The ad, which you can see below, is, well, creepy.
Here's the ad:
Just for the opening line alone this spot takes its place in political ad pantheon. As O'Donnell frenemy Bill Maher told CNN's John King, "I think when you have to start your campaign ad with, 'I'm not a witch,' the battle has been lost." She violates one of the cardinal rules of public debate, drilled into anyone who has done media training: Never repeat an attack against you.There are always ways to inoculate yourself against or respond to specific charges without trotting them back out.
But it's the latter 28 seconds that give me the willies. "I'm nothing you've heard," she tells the camera as day spa piano music plays in the background. "I'm you."
"I'm you"? Not, "I'm just like you," but, "I'm you"? A friend of mine suggested that the ad has a Stepford quality to it, but that's not quite right. Stepford implies a submissive quality happily lacking in a major party political nominee. Rather the whole piece, with it's bookend pronouncements that the pol doesn't merely identify with the viewer but is them, has a note of saccharine menace to it. The comparison that popped into my head was the character Diana, the smiling alien overlord from the mediocre revival of the television show V.
She isn't a witch. But pronouncing that she is us raises hackles about whether she is one of us.