When it comes to presidential elections, all politics is dirty. As Susan Estrich, Michael Dukakis's campaign manager in 1988, says, "He who doesn't throw mud ends up covered in it." The 2008 election has been no exception to the truth that Dukakis learned the hard way, and the electorate can look forward to almost six more months of mud blizzards before Election Day clears the campaign skies in November.
In this third report from the Center for Public Integrity's The Buying of the President series, Stephanie Mencimer examines dirty tricks in politics, like the recent rumors that Barack Obama is a practicing Muslim. Who are the opposition researchers or tricksters who dig up this dirt? Her investigation attempts to answer these questions and more.
Stephanie Mencimer covers legal affairs and domestic policy in the Washington bureau of Mother Jones magazine and is a contributing editor at Washington Monthly. Previously, she was a senior writer at Washington City Paper, an investigative reporter for The Washington Post, and a staff writer for Legal Times. Mencimer is the author of Blocking the Courthouse Door: How the Republican Party and Its Corporate Allies Are Taking Away Your Right to Sue.
This free podcast is from our '08 Conversations series.