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The ITT List

Wednesday, Sep 24, 2008, 12:24 pm

McCain’s Final Hail Mary

By Jarrett Dapier

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John McCain is suspending his campaign in order to return to Washington and work on the unfolding "crisis." He also is calling for a delay or cancellation to Friday's debate.

It's another gutsy, extreme, and, I'd wager, ultimately loco move akin to choosing Sarah Palin as his running mate. This way he looks more patriot than politician (sets aside petty politics to serve the country in time of dire need), and can also fabricate the illusion that he had a hand in saving the country from disaster. Oh, and that this move gets him out of the debate, during which he was sure to turn in a lackluster, out-of-touch performance, and also yanks the attention back to him at a time when he's plummeting in the polls? That's just lucky, I guess.

Josh Marshall asks the right questions:


What's changed today in the financial crisis other than John McCain's poll numbers tanking? Isn't this the campaign equivalent of faking an injury when you're down late in the 4th quarter? Note too that McCain was in the midst of debate prep when he made this decision.

Look at what appears to have happened. Obama reached out to McCain privately to agree to a shared set of bailout principles. McCain went off the handle again and tried to use the crisis as a way to call off the debates.

Jarrett Dapier is a former assistant publisher at In These Times. Previous work for ITT includes interviews with playwright Christopher Shinn and Fugazi guitarist, Ian Mackaye. He currently works with teens at the Evanston Public Library where he runs a recycled drumming program and directs stage adaptations of young adult literature. He lives in Evanston, IL.

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