While I think Orin's right about both the outcome of Heller and the impact of the Obama talk, I am far less sanguine about the chances of a conservative base so contented that they'll stay home in any significant numbers. There are dozens of easily fabricated social issues with which to generate conservative outrage toward morally or sexually profligate democrats, and though a neutered second amendment might be a fine reason to be pissed off, it's hard to imagine anyone in the McCain camp being too bummed out about losing it as an issue.
But on to Obama. I couldn't disagree with Orin more about Obama's explanation for his association with the good Revered. He was very clear. And, I might add, that in being so clear he showed a lot of spine. The senator's explanation (beyond the tepid "he introduced me to my faith") is that he's close to Wright because, despite the fact that some of his statements are reprehensible, the man is everything one wants in a preacher, and particularly one steeped in the traditions of black churches. Why let the man baptize your kids or conduct your wedding? Because he also feeds the poor, gives aid and shelter to the homeless, runs a prison ministry, and does most everything else that an activist church should do. Call me crazy but that's a pretty clear and convincing argument to me.