Sunday, August 03, 2008
John McCain's a dishonest campaigner
In the middle of John McCain's dopey Britney & Paris attack ad, the announcer gravely asks of Barack Obama: "Is He Ready to Lead?" An equally good question is whether McCain is ready to lead. For a man who will turn 72 this month, he's a surprisingly immature politician—erratic, impulsive and subject to peer pressure from the last knucklehead who offers him advice. The youthful insouciance that for many years has helped McCain charm reporters like me is now channeled into an ad that one GOP strategist labeled "juvenile," another termed "childish" and McCain's own mother called "stupid."
A few months ago, I wrote that John McCain was an honorable man and he would run an honorable campaign. I was wrong. I used to think, as David Ignatius does, that McCain's true voice was humble and moderate, but now I'm beginning to think his Senate colleagues may be right about his temperament. From what I can gather, Mississippi Senator Thad Cochran, a Republican, reflected the views of many of his colleagues earlier this year when he said:
"The thought of his being president sends a cold chill down my spine...He is erratic. He is hotheaded. He loses his temper and he worries me."
The erratic nature of McCain's campaign seems to be confirming that judgment.
The New York Times:
Mr. McCain repeatedly said Mr. Obama "would rather lose a war to win a political campaign" and that he "does not understand" what is at stake in Iraq. He also accused Mr. Obama of canceling a visit to wounded American troops in a German military hospital because news cameras were not allowed. That’s a false account of what occurred — and Mr. McCain ignored Mr. Obama’s unheralded visit to a combat hospital in Baghdad.
The Washington Post:
For four days, Sen. John McCain and his allies have accused Sen. Barack Obama of snubbing wounded soldiers by canceling a visit to a military hospital because he could not take reporters with him, despite no evidence that the charge is true.
The Seattle Post-Intelligencer:
The McCain campaign has begun airing a new TV hit, dubbed "Celeb," that ridicules Obama's appearance before 200,000 people in Berlin, and likens the Democrats' nominee in waiting to empty-headed celebrities Britney Spears and Paris Hilton.
The hit comes on top of a patently untrue charge – repeated by McCain on "Larry King Live" – that Obama snubbed wounded soldiers in Germany by canceling a visit to a military hospital.