I’m seriously not sure what to make of this:
The Obama campaign told CTV late Thursday night that no message was passed to the Canadian government that suggests that Obama does not mean what he says about opting out of NAFTA if it is not renegotiated.
However, the Obama camp did not respond to repeated questions from CTV on reports that a conversation on this matter was held between Obama’s senior economic adviser — Austan Goolsbee — and the Canadian Consulate General in Chicago.
Earlier Thursday, the Obama campaign insisted that no conversations have taken place with any of its senior ranks and representatives of the Canadian government on the NAFTA issue. On Thursday night, CTV spoke with Goolsbee, but he refused to say whether he had such a conversation with the Canadian government office in Chicago. He also said he has been told to direct any questions to the campaign headquarters.
I’ll be honest with you: when Tuesday night’s debate slipped into the surreal “opt-out of NAFTA” dialogue, Dear Husband and I both agreed that Clinton and Obama were crossing pretty far across the pander-line. But we also judged the likelihood of anybody (especially Obama) acting on this threat to be very very low… and that the Canadian and Mexicans would see it the same way.
Is it really possible that the Obama camp didn’t judge this the same way?
It’s hard to imagine how a campaign that has been so incredibly well-run could have committed a blunder of this magnitude.
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Added: From a comment, I suspect I wasn’t as clear here as I should have been (and not being clear is a Big Problem if you’re gonna blog). Let me restate my last paragraph:
I’m skeptical, at this point, that a campaign that has proven itself time and again to be very carefully managed and brilliantly organized, could have committed a blunder of this magnitude.
I think there’s more (or less) to this story than we’re hearing.