The Washington Times - August 1, 2008, 09:38AM

The National Republican Committee launched a Web site to ridicule Democratic presidential candidate Barack Obama by tying him to Hollywood megastars. The site, www.WhoSaidItCelebrityEdition.com, asks visitors to match a questionable or outlandish statement with either a tinseltown starlet or with Obama.

 

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This latest attack comes on the heels of a television advertisement from Republican rival John McCain, who this week likened Obama to pop tarts Britney Spears and Paris Hilton, saying he is a glamorous celebrity with charisma but no substance.

 

“These campaigns are tough, but I’m proud of the campaign we have run … We’re proud of that commercial,” McCain said yesterday at a townhall meeting in Racine, Wisc. “There are differences, and we are drawing those differences. What we are talking about here is substance, and not style.”

 

Obama has condemned the attacks in campaign stops in a fundraising appeal emailed last night to supporters.

 

“Given the seriousness of these issues, you’d think we’d be having a serious debate. But instead, John McCain is running an expensive, negative campaign against us. Each day brings a desperate new set of attacks,” Obama wrote. “And they’re not just attacking me. They’re attacking you. They’re mocking the desire of millions of Americans to step up and take ownership of the political process.”

 

The big question is whether this tactic will actually help McCain or make him come across as a crochety, jealous septuagenarian. On the other hand, it could help him score points with younger voters while also pointing out his decades-long career in national public service, a path where Obama is trailing far behind.