With President Bush way down in the polls, the Obama campaign is doing everything it can to link the president with Senator McCain. That could be an effective strategy. So the McCain people have a new ad saying this:


ANNOUNCER: Washington's broken. John McCain knows it. We're worse off than we were four years ago. Only McCain has taken on big tobacco, drug companies, fought corruption in both parties. He'll reform Wall Street, battle big oil, make America prosper again. He's the original maverick. One is ready to lead: McCain.

JOHN MCCAIN: I'm John McCain and I approve this message.


Now in reply, Obama put this out:


ANNOUNCER: He's the original maverick.

MCCAIN: The president and I agree on most issues. There was a recent study that showed that I voted with the president over 90 percent of the time.

ANNOUNCER: John McCain supports Bush's tax cuts for millionaires, but nothing for 100 million households. He's for billions of new oil company giveaways while gas prices soar, and for tax breaks for companies that ship jobs overseas. The original maverick or just more of the same?

BARACK OBAMA: I'm Barack Obama and I approve this message.


Now you may have noticed the McCain statement about Bush was made more than five years ago when the country was a far different place. Of course, it wasn't exactly fair for Obama to use that old clip, but that's politics in America.

However, the question for tonight is about McCain's strategy. Is it smart for him to openly say Washington is broken and, by implication, criticize Mr. Bush's leadership? I don't think that is smart for a number of reasons.

First, some conservatives still like the president and are skeptical about McCain, and that's not the way to win them over.

Second, McCain's emphasis should be on solving vexing problems, not assigning blame for what has gone wrong. That's what Obama is doing. Independent voters, the ones that will decide the next election, want hope, not blame. McCain should be giving voters as much hope as possible, while at the same time emphasizing the inexperience of his opponent.

Again, this election is about Barack Obama. Yes or no on him. All McCain has to do is provide a steady alternative, be a secure presence.

And one more thing: I say that every time Obama tries to tie McCain to Bush, McCain should tie Obama to Nancy Pelosi. It makes sense, right? As Obama predicted, McCain will have to scare people, and that might be the way to do it.

And that's "The Memo."

Pinheads & Patriots

Tuesday night I went to see the legendary R&B group Earth, Wind & Fire at Radio City.

Click here to watch "Pinheads & Patriots."

Now, if you get a chance, go see these guys. Not only did they put on a great show, but they thank God and America for their huge success. How refreshing, when you think about what's going on in entertainment today.

Bailey, Johnson and White, along with the band, are patriots.

On the pinhead front, a guy buys a sandwich from Subway, goes home, finds out it's not what he ordered, so of course, he calls 911.


911 OPERATOR: Jacksonville 911, Williams.

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: I got a situation over here with a Subway sandwich shop.

911 OPERATOR: OK, sir, what's going on there?

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: Well, I ordered two sandwiches, and I asked for everything on one sandwich and the other one I asked for the same thing on the other sandwich. I didn't get what I paid for.


Pinhead? No doubt.

You can catch Bill O'Reilly's "Talking Points Memo" and "Pinheads & Patriots" weeknights at 8 and 11 p.m. ET on the FOX News Channel and any time on foxnews.com/oreilly. Send your comments to: oreilly@foxnews.com