Tales from the Trail

Obama: Republicans focusing on lipstick and Britney, not issues

CONCORD, N.H. – Barack Obama accused Republicans on Friday of trying to shift the focus of the presidential debate away from serious issues such as the economy and toward frivolous subjects like lipstick, Britney Spears and Paris Hilton.rtx8oqq.jpg

Taking on a feistier tone, the Democratic presidential hopeful sought to show his supporters he wants to fight back aggressively against escalating attacks by his rival John McCain.

Democrats have become concerned about the momentum gained by McCain and his new running mate as polls have shown McCain has pulled even or slightly ahead of Obama, erasing the lead the Democratic presidential nominee held throughout the summer.

“You’ve seen the other side not want to spend any time talking about the issues,” Obama said. “I mean, what have they been talking about? They’ve been talking about lipstick. They’ve been talking about pigs. They’ve been talking about Britney. They’ve been talking about Paris.”

“These are serious times and it requires a serious debate,” he said. Obama was referring to a blitz of ads McCain has run, including one that likened him to celebrities such as Britney Spears and Paris Hilton.

Paris Hilton strikes back at McCain ad

WASHINGTON – You knew she wouldn’t take this lying down.
Paris Hilton struck back Tuesday at Republican presidential candidate John McCain for running a campaign ad that likened Democratic rival Barack Obama’s celebrity to that of the blond socialite and to singer Britney Spears.
The video, posted on the Web site www.FunnyorDie.com, began with images of the 71-year-old Arizona senator: “He’s the oldest celebrity in the world, like super-old. Old enough to remember when dancing was a sin and beer was served in a bucket. But, is he ready to lead?”
Then the camera turned on the blond socialite, sitting on a poolside lounge chair in a skimpy leopard-print bathing suit.
“Hey America, I am Paris Hilton and I’m a celebrity too,” she said. “Only I’m not from the olden days and I am not promising change like that other guy. I’m just hot.”
“But then that wrinkly white-haired guy used me in his campaign ad, which I guess means I’m running for president. And I want America to know that I’m like, totally ready to lead.”

See more Paris Hilton videos at Funny or Die

She goes on to outline her energy policy, taking a little bit from both candidates running in the November presidential election: “limited offshore drilling with strict environmental oversight while creating tax incentives to get Detroit to make hybrid electric cars. … Energy crisis solved. “I’ll see you at the debates, bitches.”
    On Sunday, Hilton’s mother, Kathy Hilton, complained that the McCain ad was a waste of time and money. Hilton and her husband, a scion of the Hilton hotel chain, donated $4,600 to McCain’s White House bid. 
Click here for more Reuters 2008 campaign coverage.    

Photo credit: Reuters/Fred Prouser (Paris Hilton poses at the 2008 MTV Movie Awards in Los Angeles)