Many Democrats are drooling over this bit by Keith Olbermann in which he plays a clip in which a guest on Hannity's show "skewers" him.
I'm sorry, but this is just dumb. The guest, Robert Gibbs, is trying to say that charging guilt by association is inherently wrongheaded by equating a working relationship or friendship with a reporter/interviewee relationship. That's dumb.
I'm not saying that the Obama/Ayers story has legs. It's a dumb smear. But the way to argue against it is not to say "Well as a reporter you interviewed an anti-Semite, so that must make you one too."
Because here's the thing...sometimes guilt by association is a legitimate criticism. If a politician were best friends with a Grand Wizard of the KKK, played golf with him every Sunday and ate dinner at his house every Thursday, that would say something about him, wouldn't it? It is perfectly legitimate to assess someone's judgment and character based on their ties and associations with others.
But a politician necessarily works with a lot of different people in a lot of different contexts. It would be utterly surprising if Obama hadn't worked with seedy people, especially having been a politician in Chicago. The real question is the extent to which he had a relationship with Ayers and either agreed or disavowed his views and actions. And on that count, the link looks pretty flimsy.
But there is a huge qualitative difference between collaborating with someone in some capacity and interviewing them, which makes it a stupid, distracting argument.