Worst Messaging Ever (Part II)

Sully reports on another McCain ad set to air.  As is to be expected, it’s negative (remember, McCain’s campaign is now 100% negative folks), and definitely takes Obama to task for not being ready.

But it’s the last word of the script that makes this an incredibly interesting commercial.

The McCain ad makes the now familiar claim that Obama is not ready to be President of the United States, but then it throws in a bizarre, “yet,” after what we literary folks like to call a “pregnant pause.”

“Yet”?  I don’t think I’ve ever heard an opponent from an opposing party use “Yet” before in this context.  Granted, in the Democratic primaries the Clintons used this way of thinking; Obama is a great politician and could be president someday but not now, it’s not his turn.  But this is reasonable; after all, no matter how heated a primary gets the opponents are still on the same team.

But this is just out of this world strange.  The implication that the McCain team sends isn’t that Obama should be kept away from the Oval Office at all costs (which is the message that is being peddled on the stump and among surrogates), but that he just shouldn’t be given the Oval Office now; with a little extra seasoning he will be ready.

As Sully further goes on to report, this may be telegraphing a potential move on McCain’s behalf; that he’ll promise to serve only one term, and pledge to support Obama’s run in 2012.

Personally, I think it’s much more likely that this is just another example of the Worst Messaging by a major presidential candidate ever.  I can’t imagine this being a precursor of a one term pledge followed by Obama endorsement because doing so is a nearly suicidally risky move.

Going for a one term pledge I don’t think would provide much political pay off because it’s an empty promise and shows a supreme lack of confidence in one’s own abilities.  Pledging only one term says either that you think that after four years the country will need someone else to fix your mistakes, or it will bring up the specter of McCain’s age in a very unfavorable light; if he doesn’t think he’s young enough to serve two terms, what makes him think he can serve one?

As for the much less likely Obama endorsement, that is just handing Obama a free weapon.  Obviously McCain thinks Obama can do the job if he is planning on endorsing him four years from now; why wait four years?

No, while my confidence in McCain’s ability to make wise decisions is not exactly high, I have a hard time thinking he can make such a silly move.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

Connect with Facebook