Essentially, the McCain campaign hires ghost-writers to write fabricated letters in support of McCain and Palin, then mails them to local supporters (who sign them) in swing states after which they get mailed to local newspapers en masse.
Is this as unethical as it seems on the surface? I guess one could rationalize that, as long as the signers believe everything in the letter, it’s kind of like signing a petition. But the writers are also encouraged to make the letters personal, and in the example in the above article, the writer makes up a fictitious son in Iraq to add emotional punch. I personally find the practice loathsome, and does not reflect well on the McCain-Palin ticket. Obviously, if there’s evidence that the Obama-Biden campaign is doing the same thing, I’d be just as disgusted with them.
Is this accepted practice these days? No big deal? Or a remarkable act of deception by a major political party?