“MY MUSLIM FAITH:” WHEN SARAH PALIN MISSPEAKS ON SOMETHING and the press jumps on it — as will happen — just remember this slip from Obama, which will probably get a lot less attention. Everybody misspeaks, which is why I thought the “Bushism” and “Kerryism” features from Slate were dumb. But the press focus tends to be somewhat one-sided.

More here. Including the video. Plus, this: “It’s clear in the full context that he’s giving the McCain campaign credit for not participating in spreading the rumor that he is a Muslim. He’s not saying he is a Muslim. Quite apart from that, let’s not stoop to portraying ‘Muslim’ as the equivalent of evil. That’s ugly and destructive.”

UPDATE: Reader Daniel Jacobson emails:

Of course just a slip of the tongue, not an issue — except that, as you say, if McCain had mentioned “57 states” he’d be immediately portrayed as demented.

But isn’t there a bigger issue in Obama’s almost obsessive repetition of the Muslim smear? There’s a rhetorician’s trick going on in almost all of them, including this one (ignoring the slip).

It’s this. He keeps saying things like:
My opponents say I’m Muslim, I’m friendly with terrorists, I attended some bizarre church for decades.

Trouble is, though A is false, B and C are arguably true (B probably, C certainly true). Claim A is used to assimilate the false and irresponsible rumor with (much more important) questions that Obama has never come clean about.

Interesting. I don’t think this particular slip is part of such a strategy.