McCain’s Stunt Redux

This is what I believe Sarah Silvermann calls being a douche noozle (h/t dkos):

KATIE COURIC: And, Bob, I understand that John McCain actually floated an alternative plan. What can you tell us about that?

BOB ORR We’re told at the White House Senator McCain offered an alternative plan that would include fewer regulations and more corporate tax breaks for businesses, kind of a private solution. But we’re also told those ideas angered and surprised Democrats like banking chairman Chris Dodd who now says he thinks the White House summit was more of a political stunt for McCain.

So lemme get this straight.  For days Chris Dodd & Crew are busting their sacks to get something done, McCain comes in and rides the hard-core House Republican anti-bailout economic shock doctrine and helps blow the thing up (for now–we’ll see about tomorrow). He runs his whole bipartisan/fix Washington shtick until you know actual bipartisan/quasi-working is going on in Washington which would kill his political chances, so he helps undermine it.  Seriously?  Country first my white arse.  A little John McCan’t on this one it would seem.  Jebus God Almighty.

To quote that great rap line–“Move b–ch get out the way.”

Update I:  At least Daniel hasn’t fallen for this crap.

Update II:  If you didn’t see Colbert last night.  He was en fugeo.

Update III: Oh yeah, he still claims as of tonight he won’t debate.  Not surprisingly, he didn’t actual suspend his campaign.

Update IVAmbinder reports differently.  He puts it on Boehner and sees McCain more as simply walking into a blown up situation.  Though of course even if that is the case,  the reason McCain was at the White House in the first place was (as Dodd correctly pointed out) a political show orchestrated by his campaign with the executive.  But still leaves this question from Ambinder:

After all, if not to get these recalcitrant Republicans on board, why did McCain go to Washington in the first place?

McCain doesn’t have that kinda pull with House Republicans.  With the base ones. that is  McCain again is forced with the basic problem of his campaign:  he needs the base to win but the base’s view are rejected by the vast majority of the country.  [Plus he doesn’t have total trust from the base from his years of not being totally 100% down the line on all their issues].  How can he simultaneously embrace his right-wing base and yet make it look like he’s different and such moves broadly appeal beyond the confines of the Republican base?  At a time when that brand (Republican party, esp. base Republican) is at its lowest point.

In this instance how that shakes out is that McCain has to behind the scenes play ball with the House guys (anti-bailout) and then try to sell that as Maverick/Sticking it to Washington as Usual to appeal to the middle.  Except the middle wants a deal (and a debate for that matter).  Generally that circle is squared in the McCain Camp by obfuscation, grandstanding, smoke & mirrors, and deflection of attention in another direction.

If George Bush really thought McCain was the guy to come in and make the House Republicans vote for this bill, Bush is a whole lot dumber than I think he is (and that’s saying something).

Update VThis seems like the third way on this one.  The House Republicans and McCain had an arrangement worked out.  So McCain doesn’t have to bring it up at the meeting, but he clearly isn’t surprised by it either (and supports the basic move).  Looks like, iow, McCain (as I had hunched) came to Washington to vote against the compromise plan because that would have ended any shot of his campaign for all intensive purposes.  Minus some major Obama unforced error/gaffe that is.

McCain will use this as a way to both push through a hard-right deregulationist agenda–he is after all at heart a “deregulator”–and then to position this publicly as him being Mavericky, bucking the Washington Consensus.  [Kinda undercuts his bipartisan thing but whatever].  Fighting for the people (in actuality really rich people but hey what’s that to an uninformed public).

I’m not someone who overestimates the degree to which majority of voters don’t pay attention at more than a surface level, so I can appreciate the cynicism of the thing.  But to be fair, if the electorate had any common sense/intelligence obviously he wouldn’t be able to pull such a move off.  That he can is a testament to the poor state of our media/body politic.

I’m still not convinced it will really push him to victory, but I think it helps makes the election closer than it should probably be otherwise.

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Published in: on September 25, 2008 at 8:50 pm  Leave a Comment  
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