The American Spectator defends George Allen.
Ryan Lizza wrote a article attacking Senator Allen for among other things:
Allen's penchant for snuff tobacco is depicted most unflatteringly, in the tone of "civilized people just don't do that." The Confederate flag is bandied about as a quick-and-easy sign of Allen's backwardness.
"Lizza's general tone indicates a prejudice toward the South, but one sentence in particular clinches that: "Whuppin' his siblings might have been a natural prelude to Confederate sympathies and noose-collecting if Allen had grown up in, say, a shack in Alabama." In other words, poor Alabamans are naturally racist.
Lizza takes an elite tone when discussing Allen's wearing of cowboy boots to a Virginia political gathering called Shad Planking. Lizza's very first sentence is "Senator George Allen is the only person in Virginia who wears cowboy boots." Is that supposed to be a bad thing? Are cowboy boots and Copenhagen a sign of white-trash,redneck,backwoods ignorance? Sometimes, but not always.
Does Lizza make this distinction? Does he give a former governor of VA and a current Senator the benefit of the doubt and point him out as the exception to the rule? No, he attempts to paint Allen with the same brush one would use for David Duke. I don't know that much about Allen but if the The New Republic is publishing a smear piece this early in the 2008 Presidential campaign, Allen must be doing something right.
UPDATE on the smear campaign against Allen here. Discussion at Southern Appeal.