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The Democratic Strategist

Political Strategy for a Permanent Democratic Majority

Phil and Ted

After expressing puzzlement yesterday at the political value of the Alliance for Justice’s “Phil A. Buster” ads opposing the “nuclear option” on judicial nominations, I opened up today’s Washington Post, and there, in the Reliable Source column, was a photo of Sen. Edward Kennedy (D-MA) posing with some dude dressed up as Phil, the animated bullhorn. The caption directed readers to the “nifty cartoon” starring Phil and his little friends Check and Balanz. Several younger colleagues have let me know the “Save Phil” ‘toon is an effort to replicate the School House Rock genre of retro-chic educational animations from the ’80s and early ’90s. In other words, it’s an ironic knockoff of an ironic knockoff. Still haven’t found anybody who likes it, though one colleague said: “Sure, it’s awful, but we’ve been talking about it half the day, right?”

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