As the nation ponders the importance of past associations against the backdrop of a souring economy, the McCain campaign hopes to gain an edge on Obama -- who still retains a lead in national polls. However, questions about Obama's ability to retain that cushion linger as the McCain campaign hammers him about his ties will William Ayers. Today's buzz: Will Obama's Ayers problem be overshadowed by the economy and Republicans' campaigning tactics?
- Obama's wide-ranging promises are little more than a magic act that isn't founded in reality, wrote Kimberley Strassel in the WSJ. Take-away: "Just watch him defy politics, economics, even gravity!"
- Scrutinizing Obama's past associations is important because it provides insight into an otherwise opaque candidate but McCain blew it by not bringing it up months ago, writes Charles Krauthammer in the WaPo. Take-away: "Obama clearly did not consider these views beyond the pale. For many years he swam easily and without protest in that fetid pool."
- Newsweek asks some of America's smartest women what they think of Sarah Palin. Take-away: "Get any group of women together, of any political stripe, and Sarah Palin, with all her complexities and contradictions, becomes topic No. 1."