With the quarterly earnings posted, the campaign is back in the swing of things. Everybody got their day in the sun (or, if they earned less than $10M, their day under a rock) and now is the time to rock that hott suntan. Ah, who am I kidding? It was a week full of gaffes.
Leading the charge was Johnny Mac, who last weekend gave a press conference from a Baghdad market talking progress on the war effort. Wearing full body armor, flanked by dozens of soldiers and heavy artillery, McCain said "never have I been able to drive from the airport, never have I been able to go out into the city as I was today." He quickly reverted to damage control, telling 60 Minutes (among others) "Of course I'm going to misspeak and I've done it on numerous occasions and I probably will do in the future." Given the harsh response to his Baghdad visit, McCain needed to play politics to placate his numerous critics especially after the shellacking he took in fundraising the week before. He is a wounded man trying to stay on life support long enough to heal up for the summer. But, if you actually look at his comments, which the sound byte media does not allow us, McCain really didn't misspeak in Baghdad. What he said was that there "are reasons for cautious -- very cautious optimism" in Iraq, and based upon his reasons, that is a valid argument. His only true gaffe was insensitivity. It is incredibly disrespectful to the people in Iraq everyday without an armored posse to flash the cameras, smile, and talk about progress when people are dying by the handful every single day without body armor and tanks to back them up. He should have apologized about that, and not about misspeaking. He didn't misspeak, and therein lies the twofold problem. Number 1, why is he backing down from a statement that he could easily stand behind? And number 2, does he really feel the need to seek out optimism? Straight talk? More like fate talk. Like, I think he is fated to a slippery slope away from the wide respect he used to hold.
A few days later, Mitt Romney gaffed about much more benign guns. The kind of guns that kill critters, and not neighborhoods full of civilians. My watchdog homeys up in Keene badgered Mitt into saying "I've been a hunter pretty much all my life." Pretty much. Kind of like I pretty much get every girl I go after. By pretty much, they meant once when he was a teenager he shot a rabbit with a BB gun, and then last year he shot at some quails while at a posh resort with the Republican Governors Convention. Ultimately, the campaign decided to stop lying and just came out and said "Governor Romney never said he was Teddy Roosevelt. He’s more like Jed Clampett." By the way, I was up in Keene yesterday, however briefly. Just wanted to give a shout out to the Elm City. I anxiously await next time I get to kick it at Margarita's with all the Owls.
In other news, Newt came out on Fox to call for Gonzo to get, well, gone-zo. "This is the most mishandled, artificial, self-created mess that I can remember...the buck has to stop somewhere and I am assuming it is the Attorney General and his immediate team and I think it is amazing that there's any doubt about the fact that they have totally mishandled this." Damn.
What the gaffes really come down to is this: its a damn shame that these politicians can't just Ghost Ride their campaigns when they become too hard to handle.
Who's That Drivin?