01 September 2012

The Democrats' problem responding to Clint: they can't knock him on style or on substance

I should say up front that I thought Clint was great. Here's why his performance is so troublesome for Democrats.

Clint is not George Clooney. He's not some flavor of the week, or the "sexiest man," or a well-known Hollywood political activist.

Clint Eastwood is an legendary cultural figure both in America's heartland and in the Hollywood art community.

Every American can recite any number of Clint Eastwood movie one-liners. Indeed, those lines have been used by Presidential candidates for years. He put his stamp on the Hollywood Western with his iconic roles in Sergio Leone's trilogy, and in his own movies such as The Outlaw Joey Wales and Unforgiven. He also gave us Dirty Harry, a character who appealed to Americans fed up in the 1970s with increasing crime and soft-on-criminals politicians. He has been a familiar face in America's living rooms since starring in TV's Rawhide more than fifty years ago.

But Clint is also a two-time Oscar-winning director, a feat matched by only 17 others in the award's long history. He has been nominated as a director four times, is one of only eight people ever nominated for both acting and directing in the same movie. He won an AFI film award just last year.

Actors clamor to appear in his movies.

So the first problem Democrats will have in attacking Clint is that they can't define him. People know who Clint is already, and that image is not about to change. People like Clint. It is my fervent hope that Dems try to attack him, because attacking Clint Eastwood won't help Obama.

More importantly, there is this simple truth: it was a great performance. Clint is a multi-millionaire, and in this year of attacking the rich, it was awesome to see a guy like that, who is certainly quite insulated from ordinary people, so in tune with what we are all thinking about.

It was like talking to your neighbor - only your neighbor was Clint f***ing Eastwood.

And what did he say that was wrong? The 23 million unemployed should make us sad, and it is a national disgrace. We shouldn't vote for somebody because he seems like a nice guy, and when a person doesn't do the job, you do have to let him go.

And Joe Biden is a ridiculous buffoon.

So the Democrats really only have two problems responding to Clint. They can't knock him on style - because he's Clint Eastwood - and they can't knock him on substance - because he was right.

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