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It's 3 a.m. -- and that darn White House phone keeps ringing

August 26, 2008 |  8:37 am

DENVER -- That new bewitching hour in political circles -- 3 a.m. -- once again is anchoring an ad. And in it, John McCain once again is using Hillary Clinton's words to diminish Barack Obama.

Back in the late winter -- when Clinton faced do-or-die primaries in Ohio and Texas -- her strategist Mark Penn came up with the idea of a spot built around a 3 a.m. crisis call coming into the White House as a way to raise doubts about Obama's readiness for the big job.

That fits the McCain attack strategy to a T. His campaign used the 3 a.m. concept in a previous spot targeting Obama; in the new ad featuring that pesky pre-dawn call, one of Clinton's more acerbic cracks about him is recycled.

Check it out below.

-- Don Frederick