Convention Countdown

The buzz on politics' Big Show

 Not even Karl Rove himself could script the outcome of the conventions. Says who? The author of the Republican playbook himself. But Rove admits in a commentary in the Wall Street Journal today that the public can ferret out a fake pretty quickly: "Plays that don't ring true, actors who don't seem authentic and story lines that seem contrived all fall flat. So too for political conventions.

Politico says that the McCain camp has no delusions about media coverage of the convention: it's going to be all Obama all the time. The Republicans will try to use the star-studded event as a chance to paint Obama as nothing more than a celebrity -- and will plant McCain supporters like Mitt Romney and Tim Pawlenty in Denver to draw attention away from Dems. That said:  "But even (McCain's) campaign acknowledges that it is the equivalent of the lonely sitcom playing opposite the Super Bowl."

David Gergen writes on that recent events should be a wake-up call to Dems. Gergen says Obama needs a "game-changer" or he's in trouble. Clearly naming Hillary or Al as VP, for one, would help. But it's highly unrealistic: "[T]his should be a huge wake-up call to Obama and the Democrats. From my perspective, Obama needs to introduce a game changer -- and fast."

Once again the NYT has to ruin the fun by reminding us in yesterday's editorial that the conventions are being funded by  $112 million in private donations . So what if it's a microcosm of Washington -- what about the spectacle? The excitement??  Fair point: "The celebrations in Denver and Minneapolis-St.Paul will be monuments to the way Washington works: crassly, with real politics galvanized by money."

And for Obama fans still smarting from those untimely Hawaii vacation photos and the recent low poll numbers -- fear not! At least John Edwards is not making a convention cameo.

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