September 25, 2008
Or in this case, the man behind the Palin or Wall Street bailout negotiation. The Republicans and the McCain campaign have done a masterful job of changing the subject of this Presidential election. For weeks not it hasn't been about John McCain and Barack Obama, it has been about Sarah Palin instead. And now that the initial infatuation with the "hockey mom" is starting to fade, Senator McCain has announced that he is suspending his campaign in order to focus on the Wall Street bailout.
The President of the United States has to deal with dozens of issues simultaneously. America's issues don't neatly line up and wait their turn in line. The chief executive must be able to prioritize and delegate, and at times not be involved in issues. If a candidate can't manage his or her current duties (senator or governor) along with a campaign, then perhaps they hadn't ought to be a candidate.
McCain's move smacks of theater and slight-of-hand parlor tricks. Yes, the current state of America's economy is a critical issue. For the current administration as well as the new one starting in January 2009. A debate between the candidates focusing on economic policies and agendas would be highly appropriate and timely.
The threat of not appearing at the first Presidential debate is the same kind of insidious behavior those people who tease and taunt employ. When called on their action or remark they always say, "That isn't what I meant. How could you think that of me!?" When everyone knows that the taunt was meant in the hurtful or insidious way. John McCain's threat to not appear isn't about a concern for the American people or our economy. It is simply another campaign parlor trick designed to keep us, the voters, from seeing the truth about this man and what he ultimately means for America.
If John McCain can't show up for the debate then there is no reason for him to show up on election day either.