Poll: McCain's attack strategy paying dividends

August 3, 2008 5:14:02 PM PDT
John McCain's political offensive against Barack Obama appears to be paying off in the polls.

With a slew of negative ads aimed at Obama, the Republican candidate has effectively erased the Illinois senator's nine-point lead in a national survey. Yesterday's Gallup poll suggests the candidates are tied at 44 percent apiece.

McCain, who had vowed to sidestep the kind of negative tactics used against him in the 2000 Republican primary, began his attack while Obama was on his trip to Iraq and Afghanistan last month.

The four-term Arizona senator, who backed the war, charged that Obama's promise to withdraw U.S. forces from Iraq within 16 months of taking office amounted to choosing to lose a war to win the presidency.

McCain then ran TV ads claiming that Obama didn't visit wounded troops because he couldn't take cameras, and one that compared Obama's fame to that of Britney Spears and Paris Hilton.