Powerline Goes There

I have to say that even I'm a little shocked at this latest piece from Powerline, endorsed by NRO's Andy McCarthy and elaborated on by Diana West. It is the highbrow equivalent of the Obama-Is-A-Muslim-Terrorist emails. Except it isn't even that highbrow. It's a strange attempt to draw parallels between Congressman Keith Ellison's career and Barack Obama's. Ellison, you might recall, is the only Muslim congressman. Over to Scott Johnson:

Despite the natural alliance that should exist between them, Obama has scrupulously avoided Ellison.

The New York Times reported in a June article by Andrea Elliott, for example, that Ellison had volunteered to speak on Obama's behalf at a mosque rally in Cedar Rapids, presumably before the Iowa caucus in January. Prior to the event, aides to Obama asked Ellison to cancel the trip. An Obama aide appeared at Ellison's Washington office to explain that Obama has "a very tightly wrapped message."

The clue that Keith Ellison provides to the meaning of Barack Obama's emergence in the 2008 campaign is akin to the dog that didn't bark in the Sherlock Holmes story "Silver Blaze."

Now, of course, there is nothing even faintly wrong with a Muslim congressman or Muslim president in America. But what we have is an assumption that there is something wrong and then an attempt to smear not by association, but by lack of association! This is some kind of strange conflation of paranoia and bigotry. It's where the right will head if Obama is elected. And everything that Bill Buckley did to rescue the American right from the hateful, spittle-flecked, racist fringes will be even more thoroughly undone.

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