I really think at this point John Kerry is going to lose the election, and the Swift Boat Veterans for Truth are the reason. The bottom line is that they’re gaining momentum, not losing it, and they’ve successfully forced Kerry to address them, which means that now the media can tell the story of the fight between Kerry and the other veterans rather than just talking about the Swift Boat Veterans as a fringe group that’s attacking him. Responding to them directly has given them stature that they never had before.
The other problem is that they’re making such a huge number of allegations on such a wide variety of fronts that most people are bound to believe some of them. And they have advantage of being right at least once, on the Cambodia thing. John Kerry said that the memory of being in Cambodia at Christmas, 1968 was seared into his memory, when it seems apparent that he wasn’t really there. That makes him look like a liar, whether he lied or not.
It’s been a lot of work for me to keep up with the inaccuracies and outright lies from the Swift Boat Vets, and I know that most people aren’t putting in the effort that I am. Unless people do begin to see this group as an unofficial arm of the Bush campaign willing to tell any lie to smear Kerry, I think that Kerry’s campaign is basically over. I’m feeling pretty down today about this.