In re: Campaign suspension only a ploy?

There was no suspension of his campaign. His surrogates and ads remained on television. Huffington Post bloggers, working the phones, couldn’t find a single McCain campaign office that had gone on hiatus. This “suspension” ruse was an exact replay of McCain’s self-righteous “suspension” of the G.O.P. convention as Hurricane Gustav arrived on Labor Day. “We will put aside our political hats and put on our American hats,” he declared then, solemnly pledging that conventioneers would help those in need. But as anyone in the Twin Cities could see, the assembled put on their party hats instead, piling into the lobbyists’ bacchanals earlier than scheduled, albeit on the down-low.

Op-Ed Columnist – McCain’s Suspension Bridge to Nowhere – Op-Ed – NYTimes.com.

It appears that McCain’s concern over the economy and his insistence that he needed to stop campaigning and return to Washington to right the ship may have been showmanship and politics.  (I mean what could McCain seriously do about the economy, who is self professed as ignorant on most economic issues)  Despite all that and the fact many presidents have campaigned through much worse, including Lincoln in the Civil War and FDR in WWII McCain may have needed to try and stop the flood gates of a slipping campaign.  This is at least according to an Op-Ed (link following the opening quote above) in the NY Times that mentions that “As recently as Tuesday he had not yet even read the two-and-a-half-page bailout proposal first circulated by Hank Paulson last weekend. “I have not had a chance to see it in writing,” he explained.”

Either way, as someone who once really respected McCain (2000 election cycle) I am now amazed at the transformation he has undergone all in the name of getting elected.

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2 Responses

  1. I don’t know how much he has changed. I think you used to compare him to Bush and now you’re comparing him to Obama…

    On a serious note, though, I agree with you that the candidates couldn’t do anything about The Bailout. So who cares if he read the proposal?

    Secondly, I think suspending the campaign was an admirable idea (the idea being that national attention would shift to a more immediately important issue). That said, it clearly wasn’t practical and the Obama campaign smartly (but unfortunately, in my mind) used the move politically, when I think McCain had good intentions.

    As for the convention part, I think it was a clever way to distance the McCain campaign from Bush. Not sure I can disagree that it was clearly a political ploy, though Also, you have to remember that McCain can’t control the thousands of party members who had been waiting all year to go crazy with hookers and blow (and a few airport bathroom stalls, I’m sure ;).

    McCain has alway been a maverick. Unfortunately, now he’s shooting himself in the foot, but in my mind he’s just the same guy he always was.

  2. Search for any article on the old McCain versus where he stands now and you’ll see that on countless topics he had very different positions in his last election (primary versus Bush) than he does now, even in the last year he has changed his positions to align himself more with the right of the Republicans rather than with the center where he was so often associated (do you remember there was a time when he almost jumped to the Democrats post 2000 election? seems unthinkable now).

    I’ll have to disagree with you on the suspending a campaign (did you read what he did with the first 30 hours of his suspended campaign? no it wasn’t get back to Washington it was dinner in NYC with donors, TV with Couric, etc.) He really just wanted to jump in at the last moment (10 days after the whole thing started remember?) I went from liking him 8 years ago, to really being disturbed by him.

    It wasn’t 6-8 months ago he was talking about not running a campaign built on negative ads, have you seen where he is now?

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