There is a standard by which official politics operates. To the uninitiated, it may seem that the other side crosses the line, but the details of the code are a bit murkier than the forbidding of disgusting insinuations.
You may publicly declare that your opponent is bought and paid for. You can insist that you are not. But repeating these ad nauseum won’t change the truth for your side either, its effect on reality notwithstanding.
You are allowed to imply in a campaign ad that your opponent is a kamikaze Commie-Nazi, but when you’re on the debate stage, you must vouch for their honor and maintain the utmost respect for their being, regardless the poundage of prepubescent human flesh they just devoured backstage.
To understand why the Senator from Illinois doesn’t go after the Senator from Arizona with specific and detailed damaging fact, you only need fathom that the other side always has worse dirt.
It’s kind of like, if a certain world-famous actor were to leave his “church” – they’d tell the world just what it was he’d done with his willie. As it relates to senatorial politics, however, the revelations of past deeds-done would be, at best, extremely unpopular with the electorate on either side of the aisle. (No, I’m not talking about what might’ve been done with that certain actor’s cute co-star on an altar at Bohemian Grove. Though, you never know. What ever happened to that kid, anyway?)
Actual facts surrounding the sub-prime disaster are specific and devastating to Democrats, particularly a certain Illinois senator, another from Massachusetts, and his counterpart in the other house. The former president from the state next to Missouri is the biggest culprit. And these are only the ones that I am aware of.
Hence the luke-cold criticisms of failed Republican economic policy, and quasi-specific barbs about lobbyists in their camp.
The irony of the mortgage crisis is that the Senator from Arizona called this out – not them, mind you, but the situation – and no less than the current White House appointee recommended regulation on this matter, and the aforementioned Dems thwarted their every attempt.
But when debating the need to establish of another agency to oversee Fannie Mae, Republicans didn’t scream about the Democrats being bought and paid for. This first comes now, with ads about the current candidate’s connections to this corruption. Pretty tame stuff really.
So why don’t the GOPers seem more confident in “going after” the Dems on this issue? Well, the answer is obvious, even to those in the peanut gallery armed only with vagaries about corruption limited to those they despise: There is always another body in the cellar belonging to the other “guy” – tangled in cobwebs made of the same substance as the dirt they’d be digging.