Wednesday, September 24, 2008


How is it that the same guy who has missed 109 of the past 110 votes in the Senate, and has the worst attendance record therein, who 10 days ago insisted that the 'fundamentals of the economy are strong,' and who 'knows how the world works' and 'can fix it,' now can not talk about his knowledge of the world and how he plans to fix it with his opponent as scheduled for months?

Is John McCain actually trying to lose his bid for the Presidency?


  1. I take it that you did not even consider the possibility that he's acting in good faith? Nor do you inform your readers that say, that Senator Obama is third in missed votes over the last year--only a couple behind McCain. This is just partisan nonsense. I can read posts like this at ThinkKosProgressMoveOn.puke.

  2. No, it is not possible that he is 'acting in good faith.' The debates are not scheduled for the middle of the day, they are scheduled for Friday evening. You accurately state Obama's record, and it is recognized.

    I can update the post if you would like, but the overall point was that McCain has taken such a preposterous stance, that he knows how the world works, and he can fix it, but it is not possible for him to develop an informed opinion on the economy while following through with his obligations to debate Sen. Obama on foreign policy Friday night.

    Presidents have to focus on many things at once, and he's interviewing with the nation for the job of President.

  3. I'm sorry, but this exchange fails, in my view, the threshold test of this blog. This is sniping, not thoughtful exchange. I tend to agree with Jumco rather than cato; but I believe that bits, or whatever, are being burned to no purpose here.

  4. As I understand you, it is not even "possible" that a Senator, one with at least some history of great personal sacrifice for his country, might in good faith suspend his marathon debate preparations (to which even Senator Obama, for whom public speaking is more natural, is reported to be devoting all day, every day this week) to deal with a national crisis of great complexity and urgency simply because the actual debate occurs in the evening. Do I have that right? "Impossible," you say. Not merely "improbable," but "impossible."

    Jumco, your are being hyperbolic.

  5. That's fair. Impossible is retracted, highly improbable is submitted.

  6. Here's another perspective, albeit by a partisan. Still, he shares Jumco's view that cancellation of the debates is a tactical mistake if all Senator McCain wants is to win. He, however, and not surprisingly, reaches the opposite conclusion--i.e., that McCain might possibly be acting for the public good and against his self-interest:

    "The presumption in many quarters is that John McCain knew he had to do something to change the direction of the race because things are going badly for him. I certainly agree that he has not covered himself in glory in the past 10 days. But the data just don’t support this opinion. With the sole exception of the ABC News poll that has Obama up by 9 points — and which features a preposterous 16-point margin of Democrats over Republicans among respondents — Obama has not gained at all in national polling over the past week. Two new surveys out tonight have Obama up by 2 points and 1 point. (One oddity in the 2-point survey — its sub-survey of so-called likely voters has Obama up by 4 points; usually in these polls the likely-voter number is tighter than the registered-voter number.)

    State-by-state polling is all over the place, with Obama leading in Virginia in one poll and behind substantially in another; McCain and Obama neck-and-neck in Pennsylvania in one poll and 9 behind in another, with similar numbers in polls in Michigan; and so on.

    The point here is that only one poll shows Obama having gained substantially from the financial crisis over the past week. Certainly, it hasn’t helped McCain in any way, and killed his momentum. But nothing here required a Hail Mary play.

    Maybe it’s as simple as this: McCain believes it’s best for him to be in Washington this week, working (or looking like he’s working) on the bailout. To do that he can’t spend 48 hours in debate prep. He already authorized the cancellation of a night of the Republican Convention owing to a crisis (Hurricane Ike); why not postpone a debate? Because Ole Miss will be disappointed?

    One more thing. If McCain is behind, thinks he’s behind, and needs to do something to come from behind, why on earth would he suggest postponing an event this week that, were it to go well for him, could reverse the trend? The last time he had an audience of 40 million, he gave a convention speech that helped move him into the lead. If, as so many are doing, you assume he’s behind and sinking, the debate could not have been scheduled at a better time for him.

  7. If McCain is acting in good faith, then why does the McCain campaign also want to postpone the VP debates next week when Sarah Palin is not a member of Congress?

  8. Re McCain "trying to lose his bid for the Presidency:"

    Maybe he's like Mr Spock, who, upon recovering from the madness that his Vulcan nature imposed upon males who were visited with the urge to mate, commented on the struggle for the girl, to the victor, by saying, "You may find the having to be less than the wanting."

    Maybe ole John is starting to contemplate living in a combination museum/police station, with some perky broad with lots of teeth and red dresses popping in all the time with suggestions for how to make everything cuter, while guys in suits keep trying to introduce him to men even shorter than he is who remind him of his worst vacation ever.

  9. Cato: to make a link in the comments active requires just a touch of html. I will demonstrate:

    Instead of:

    you could do the following:

    ! a href="" @ commentary is a silly magazine full of people pretending to be serious while saying preposterous things ! /a @

    Which, by replacing ! with < and @ with > looks like this:
    commentary is a silly magazine full of people pretending to be serious while saying preposterous things

    I hope this makes sense

  10. Barney Frank is worried about how much McCain's reentry into the Senate will politicize the bill that he claims they are actually close to completing, here.

  11. Looks like this is not the first time McCain has attempted similar behavior.


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