How can you go wrong with a political ad that doesn’t just quote your opponents, but shows videos of them saying what you’re nailing them for?

This past week, Bernie Sanders told a town hall audience that he believes dzhokhar tsarnaev, the terrorist who, with his brother, killed three and horribly injured many others in their Boston Marathon attack, should be given the right to vote.  And Kamala Harris said that giving him, and people convicted of felonies like sexual assault, the right to vote was an idea worth talking about.

Does this ad write itself, or what?

Here’s what the RNC has put out:

That is a powerful ad.

It also is a misleading one, in that it says “Democrats” believe tsarnaev should be able to vote.  That can mean just the two Democrats in the ad, but all the others as well.

The idea – and, politically, it is a very clever one – is to force every Democrat candidate to respond to the accusation, even those who have not said a word about it…with no good result regardless of what the response is:

-If a candidate agrees with Sanders, he/she is in league with terrorists.

-If a candidate equivocates in any way, he/she is in league with Harris, and says maybe that’s a good idea.

-If a candidate definitively disagrees, he/she is denouncing both Sanders and Harris and the internal battle is joined.

This is the kind of political cleverness I expect from Democrats, but rarely see from Republicans.

I wonder if this is just a one-time event, which happened only because Republicans were given an opening so obvious it couldn’t be lost on them, or if they’ve finally caught on.  Time will tell.

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