A hard-hitting new ad was recently launched by a group calling themselves "Veterans for a Strong America" that attacks Obama for trying to take all the credit for killing Bin Laden. Just as John Kerry tried to hype his military service in 2004 ("I'm John Kerry & I'm reporting for duty"), only to have "Swift Boat Veterans For Truth" tarnish his reputation, Obama may find that his over-hyping of the Bin Laden raid could blow up in his face.
Check out the ad here:
Karl Rove gave the ad, and the group behind it, an endorsement of sorts today, tweeting that it was a "powerful ad." Ben Smith of BuzzFeed predicts Rove's words will help it raise money and give a strong boost to the organization behind the ad.
If "Veterans for a Strong America" does end up having an effect on Obama's campaign, Obama has no one to blame but himself.
From the minute he announced the death of Bin Laden, Obama made it all about himself, as the ad notes, with constant references to himself when discussing the raid. In comparison, when President Bush announced the capture of Saddam Hussein, the constant references Obama makes to me, myself and I are almost totally absent.
Then, last week, Obama's campaign released an ad talking about how great Obama was for greenlighting the mission and asking whether Mitt Romney would have done the same, trying to score some cheap political points.
The mistake Obama has made with Bin Laden is overplaying his hand. He should have been more deferential to the soldiers who actually risked their lives, and not only their approval ratings, when announcing Bin Laden's demise. And he could have easily celebrated the anniversary of Bin Laden's death, soaking up all the positive press that would have come with it, without resorting to making it a tagline in a campaign ad.
Obama politicized the raid, but with groups like "Veterans for a Strong America," he may wish he hadn't.