(CNN) – After a week of bare-knuckle political brawling on the trail, it seemed Friday John McCain’s campaign had found religion.
In a Web ad e-mailed to supporters, the McCain team painted Barack Obama as a recipient of near-messianic hype – and a candidate all-too-willing to believe it.
“It shall be known that in 2008 the world will be blessed. They will call him ‘The One,’” says the announcer in the minute-long video, over images of light shining from the heavens and a gospel music-like soundtrack, interspersed with clips drawn from Obama speeches.
“And he has anointed himself. Ready to carry the burden of The One,” continues the announcer. “He can do no wrong. Can you see the light?”
By the end of the ad, Obama seems to have received a promotion from mere Messiah to possible divinity: Charlton Heston’s Moses is shown parting the Red Sea, proclaiming “Behold His mighty hand!” as Obama’s presidential seal rises from the waters.
“Barack Obama may be the one. But is he ready to lead?” concludes the announcer.
On a flight to Panama City Florida, McCain senior adviser Nicolle Wallace told reporters that the video had been designed as a bookend to what the campaign believed had been a very successful week.
In a CNN poll of polls Friday, the Arizona senator cut Obama’s Monday lead by half, to three points.
Wallace added that the ad – which she described as respectful of all faiths - was intended to rally the presumptive Republican nominee’s supporters, and that there was an "important role for humor in all campaigns. I think all of us would slit our wrists if it wasn't for that."