Kicking the infighting up a notch

KICKING THE INFIGHTING UP A NOTCH…. Ben Smith’s impressive item earlier about the infighting among McCain campaign aides has caused quite a stir, but just as importantly, it’s also caused more McCain aides to start pointing fingers more aggressively.

McCain sources say Palin has gone off message several times, and they privately wonder if the incidents were deliberate. They cited that she labeled robocalls — recorded messages often used to attack a candidate’s opponent — “irritating” even as the campaign defended their use. Also, they pointed to her telling reporters she disagreed with the campaign’s decision to pull out of Michigan.

A second McCain source tells CNN she appears to be looking out for herself more than the McCain campaign.

“She is a diva. She takes no advice from anyone,” said this McCain adviser. “She does not have any relationships of trust with any of us, her family or anyone else.

“Also, she is playing for her own future and sees herself as the next leader of the party. Remember: Divas trust only unto themselves as they see themselves as the beginning and end of all wisdom.”

This is only going to get worse, as various factions fight to preserve their careers by destroying their campaign colleagues, hoping to avoid blame in the event of a defeat.

Kevin noted that today’s buzz is likely “just the barest teaser of the bloodshed that’s going to erupt between McCain and Palin loyalists after the election.” If the McCain campaign comes up short, that’s certainly true. We’re 10 days from Election Day and multiple McCain insiders are dishing to CNN about Sarah Palin being a power-hungry diva?

What do you suppose McCain’s top aides will be saying in 11 days?

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Steve Benen

Steve Benen is a producer at MSNBC's The Rachel Maddow Show. He was the principal contributor to the Washington Monthly's Political Animal blog from August 2008 until January 2012.