Barack Obama's campaign style: Go negative, stay clean

"The early salvos are also familiar moves in a strategy that has worked in each of the four federal campaigns Obama has run: disqualifying character attacks from aides or outsiders, executed brutally as Obama himself floats above the fray.

'It’s a lot like his foreign policy — leading from behind but with a high body count,' said a Republican who held a top position in the 2008 presidential race. 'Rarely is Obama himself the tip of the spear in an attack. He’s much more likely to let liberal allies and the media initiate the attack and keep it alive.'”

(by Ben Smith)