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McCain Camp’s Ill-Prepared Vetting Undercuts “Readiness” Argument


Much of John McCain’s presidential campaign has hinged on his so-called experience, which we’re led to believe means the Senator can run the White House. And, of course, the rest of the nation.

Time and time again McCain and his backers have insisted he’s “ready” for the job. Shoot, even President Bush has been getting in on the action, telling the Republican National Convention last night that McCain’s got the chops:

I know what it takes to be President [Editor: Really?!]. In these past eight years, I’ve sat at the Resolute desk and reviewed the daily intelligence briefings, the threat assessments, and reports from our commanders on the front lines. I’ve stood in the ruins of buildings knocked down by killers, and promised the survivors I would never let them down.

I know the hard choices that fall solely to a President. John McCain’s life has prepared him to make those choices. He is ready to lead this nation.

The recent dust-ups surrounding Sarah Palin make us wonder if McCain’s really can lead a nation.

McCain and his camp insist that they did a “thorough” vetting of Palin, searching public records and looking into her background, just as they did with so many other candidates. They did not, however, actually talk to her. The Senator’s campaign admitted Tuesday that they didn’t interview Palin until Wednesday, one day before she was asked to be the Republican’s running mate. Though the McCain campaign knew that Palin’s 17-year old, unwed daughter was with child – Palin told him during the Wednesday interview – we wonder whether they knew about Todd Palin’s drunk driving arrest twenty-years ago, or that Palin said God had steered the nation to war with Iraq, among other things.

These scandalous and worrisome details aside, the fact that McCain allowed his staffers to do such a sloppy search astounds us. Yes, McCain was under enormous pressure to fill his ticket, but the haphazard nature of this whole mess indicate two things. First, McCain does not have control of his camp, which must not completely understand the definition of “thorough”. If one can’t control their own staff, how can they be entrusted with the highest seat in the land?

Second, McCain’s apparent flippancy – carelessness? – raises serious questions about his judgment. Though obviously biased, Barack Obama campaign manager David Plouffe makes a good point in his criticism of McCain’s vetting: “The way the process was done should be of interest to voters because I do think it speaks to how things will be managed and executed as president.”

More than anything else, this Republican ticket suggests that McCain lacks a very presidential quality: foresight. Social conservatives may be pleased with Palin and this may turn out to be the best decision for McCain, but the tide of negative news make it seem like McCain simply doesn’t think about consequences. Perhaps McCain’s more like Bush than either man would care to admit.

[On a separate, but equally important note, McCain canceled an appearance on CNN after accusing anchor Campbell Brown of being partial in an interview with McCain pal Tucker Bounds. This sensitivity and the candidate's repeated battles with the press also indicate a lack of readiness. And, we think, go against that whole "free press" thing. Dealing with journalists in a tactful and respectful manner's part of the president's job.]

By:           Andrew Belonksy
On:           Sep 3, 2008
Tagged: , , , ,

  • 21 Comments
    • seitan-on-a-stick
      seitan-on-a-stick

      BUSH’S ENDORSEMENT

      I know what it takes to be President [Editor: Really?!].

      FINALLY, SO WHAT HAVE YOU BEING DOING THESE LAST 8 YEARS?

      In these past eight years, I’ve sat at the Resolute desk

      FOR MY DAILY SUDOKU

      and reviewed the daily intelligence briefings,

      AND ASKED LAURA WHAT THE BIG WORDS MEANT

      the threat assessments, and reports from our commanders on the front lines.

      IN THE WAR WITH A COUNTRY THAT DID NOT ATTACK US

      I’ve stood in the ruins of buildings knocked down by killers,

      THOSE BLACKWATER CONTRACTORS I HIRED

      and promised the survivors I would never let them down.

      TIME AND AGAIN, I DID!

      I know the hard choices that fall solely to a President.

      AND AVOIDED THEM BY DEFERING TO DICK

      John McCain’s life has prepared him to make those choices.

      SARAH PALLIN’s A FIRECRACKER!

      He is ready to lead this nation.

      TO A PLACE SO DARK THAT EVEN HE HAD WISHED OBAMA HAD WON, WHICH HE DID, BUT THEY STOLE IT AGAIN!

      Sep 3, 2008 at 12:36 pm · @ReplyReply to this comment ·
    • PearlsBeforeSwine
      PearlsBeforeSwine

      Sarah Palin has one very powerful thing going for her, the straight guys like her naughty school librarian look, Do you think sex doesn’t sell?

      If a world where Americans choose their President based on which one they would rather have a beer with, do you think it doesn’t matter which one they would rather look at for the next four years?

      Sep 3, 2008 at 2:02 pm · @ReplyReply to this comment ·
    • Jason
      Jason

      I believe McCain is ready to lead this nation. He’s ready to continue the gutting of the middle-class, start more wars and dig America into a deeper hole.

      Sep 3, 2008 at 2:35 pm · @ReplyReply to this comment ·
    • Tweety
      Tweety

      Is getting a DUI really that big of a deal? Doesn’t everyone have one by now?

      Sep 3, 2008 at 2:40 pm · @ReplyReply to this comment ·
    • Jaroslaw
      Jaroslaw

      Seitan on stick – LOVE YOUR POST…. :)

      Tweety – I can only guess that the DUI was mentioned not because it was a big deal, but because the staffers probably didn’t find it, like everything else when they were “vetting” her.

      Sep 3, 2008 at 2:44 pm · @ReplyReply to this comment ·
    • CHURCHILL-Y
      CHURCHILL-Y

      First I was afraid
      I was petrified
      Kept thinking I could never live
      without you by my side
      But I spent so many nights
      thinking how you did me wrong
      I grew strong
      I learned how to carry on
      and so you’re back
      from outer space
      I just walked in to find you here
      with that sad look upon your face
      I should have changed my stupid lock
      I should have made you leave your key
      If I had known for just one second
      you’d be back to bother me

      Go on now go walk out the door
      just turn around now
      ’cause you’re not welcome anymore
      weren’t you the one who tried to hurt me with goodbye
      you think I’d crumble
      you think I’d lay down and die
      Oh no, not I
      I will survive
      as long as i know how to love
      I know I will stay alive
      I’ve got all my life to live
      I’ve got all my love to give
      and I’ll survive
      I will survive

      It took all the strength I had
      not to fall apart
      kept trying hard to mend
      the pieces of my broken heart
      and I spent oh so many nights
      just feeling sorry for myself
      I used to cry
      Now I hold my head up high
      and you see me
      somebody new
      I’m not that chained up little person
      still in love with you
      and so you felt like dropping in
      and just expect me to be free
      now I’m saving all my loving
      for someone who’s loving me

      Sep 3, 2008 at 3:41 pm · @ReplyReply to this comment ·
    • Mr C
      Mr C

      ChitchBitch-UGH you won’t survive and I hope once all the hate crimes act against Gays are gone when Grandpa takes office. Maybe someone will toast and slay your rabid, racist ass!

      Sep 3, 2008 at 3:45 pm · @ReplyReply to this comment ·
    • Larry Linn
      Larry Linn

      I don’t know what all the fuss is about regarding McCain’s and Palin’s credentials. They are first rate.
      McCain being the son of an Admiral and the Grandson of an Admiral went to the Naval Academy. Due to the fact that his father and grandfather were both active Admirals I’m sure he was under extreme pressure to do well and that’s the reason he finished 894th out of a class of 899.
      He only wrecked 4 airplanes while in Navy Flight School. Isn’t that about average?
      And Palin. C’mon people, she’s definitely ready to be president. I don’t know how she managed it but she was able to get into the University of Idaho Journalism School. It’s a known fact you can’t get into the Univ of Idaho unless your dad is a Congressman or donates enough money to build a new dormitory.
      I can tell you one thing for sure it’s a heck of a lot harder for a White Girl with Connections to get into the University of Idaho than it would be for some Poor Black Kid to get into Columbia and Harvard Law School. That’s a no brainer….
      And then she was the mayor of Wasilla, Alaska. How could that not prepare you to be Vice President and one heart beat away from President? Why Wasilla is bigger than most high schools in this country! So what if she ran a budget deficit every year she was mayor. Its the American way…….heck, between 1980 and 2008 there have only been 5 years that this country has had a budget surplus….1996 thru 2001. So, no big deal there.
      But if you want experience lets talk about her heading the Alaska Oil Conservation Commission. There she headed up the entire department of 22 people. WOW!!!!! I wasn’t sure how she managed such a powerful and stressful position so I went to their website and found the 22 people listed and 10 of them had the title of administrative assistant. See, she knows how to spread around authority. That’s very presidential.
      And can you believe those crazy democrats? Trotting out Obama’s Law Degrees from Columbia and Harvard. And bragging how he was the President of the Harvard Law Review, his 10 years teaching constitutional law at the Univ of Chicago Law School, his 8 years in the Illinois State Senate and his 4 years and a United States Senator. Bah! Just because this nation was built on a constitution of laws doesn’t mean squat.
      And Biden. C’mon! His resume is a joke. A degree in Political Science from the University of Delaware, a Doctorate of Law from Syracuse University, 36 years as a United States Senator of which 12 years were as Chairman of the United States House Judiciary Committee. He then took over as Chairman of the United States Foreign Affairs Committee for the past 11 years.
      Isn’t it obvious that OBAMA AND BIDEN no credentials to be president or vice-president. You’d have to be an idiot to think otherwise……..
      I mean the only thing worse would be if they had a pregnant un-wed underage teenage little girl or a spouse that belonged to a party that wants Alaska to succeed from the United States. If that were the case you would have to be a complete idiot to vote for them.

      Sep 3, 2008 at 3:47 pm · @ReplyReply to this comment ·
    • RyanInSacto
      RyanInSacto

      @Larry Lin: Bravo!

      Sep 3, 2008 at 4:31 pm · @ReplyReply to this comment ·
    • Jason
      Jason

      @ larry Lin
      That was great

      Sep 3, 2008 at 4:58 pm · @ReplyReply to this comment ·
    • Jason
      Jason [Different person #1 using similar name]

      If we were voting based on who’s hotter then Barack would win in a landslide.

      Sep 3, 2008 at 8:16 pm · @ReplyReply to this comment ·
    • Charles J. Mueller
      Charles J. Mueller

      Kudos to Larry Lin. Great piece of writing.

      Sep 3, 2008 at 9:35 pm · @ReplyReply to this comment ·
    • Scudder
      Scudder

      Larry Linn…U R Awesome! Brilliant post!

      Sep 3, 2008 at 10:11 pm · @ReplyReply to this comment ·
    • CHURCHILL-Y
      CHURCHILL-Y

      What’s that foul smell coming out of the DNC headquarters?

      Obamatron diapers full of shit that’s what!

      Obama just lost the election.

      The next Vice President of the United States Sarah Barracuda ’08

      Sep 3, 2008 at 11:17 pm · @ReplyReply to this comment ·
    • laxmi
      laxmi

      Larry Lin, Brilliant writing.

      Sep 4, 2008 at 1:43 am · @ReplyReply to this comment ·
    • JJJJ
      JJJJ

      Palin was obviously a great choice for McCain to make, after seeing her speech. However, like the Democrat Convention, the Republican one is a bunch of baloney. Speakers preaching to the choir. The debates are what will decide the election.

      Sep 4, 2008 at 7:16 am · @ReplyReply to this comment ·
    • Jaroslaw
      Jaroslaw

      Churchill-Y

      It is a free country, you can post here, but why? Do you like denigration? I mean, we don’t have to agree on everything, but it is nice to at least TRY to see the other person’s point of view. Isn’t that at least one of the purposes of this Blog? You must seem to thrive on dissension and chaos. You’re sorry.

      Sep 4, 2008 at 8:30 am · @ReplyReply to this comment ·
    • CHURCHILL-Y
      CHURCHILL-Y

      By “denigration” you mean ?

      Honestly, I should know better than to respond to you but anyone who comes here for the first time and reads comments like yours could easily believe what you’re writing. You of all people talking about denigration! After all the insults and obscene epithets thrown around by some of you at people from your own party. Just because you were so lobotomized by a candidate that in the end will return back to where he came from and leave us and our party and our community in worst shape.

      You know what Jaroslaw I have far more respect for a despicable thug like Mr c than for hypocrites like you. At least when he posts he makes no bones about his viciousness, hatred and bias. You on the other hand want to make seem as if people like me brought us to the point we find ourselves in(if you’re really a Democrat) instead of looking at all the throats you slashed and lives you ruined in the name of your candidate.
      See how far it has gotten you. Good luck.

      Sep 4, 2008 at 11:37 am · @ReplyReply to this comment ·
    • Jaroslaw
      Jaroslaw

      Churchy- your first paragraph shows a) you don’t know how to read what I wrote to you nor apparently do you know how to use a dictionary.

      I was as kind as I possibly could be up until the part where I said “you’re sorry.” Even that isn’t as nasty as what you wrote back to me.

      Then you lump me in with everyone else – and mostly I have talked about arriving at the truth, looking at both sides, making sure people are accountable for their positions and decisions.

      How does that make me lobotomized, a throat slasher or your most absurd accusation, a hypocrite?

      Sep 4, 2008 at 8:19 pm · @ReplyReply to this comment ·
    • CHURCHILL-Y
      CHURCHILL-Y

      Fine Jaroslaw you’re right and I’m wrong. You still only want to engage in discourse when it suits you and when your side is loosing. Otherwise it’s only calling someone who disagrees with you a racist and a xenophobe. Apparently you know more than me maybe you’re cosmopolitan and all so that makes you better than me. Guess I should also be grateful to you for only insulting me until your last sentence. Just remember one thing if ever you decide to utter or write another demeaning and condescending word about people like me and Palin, there are ten more like us out there in states where it counts than there are like you. I don’t know maybe you mean well and your just in denial.

      Sep 4, 2008 at 9:22 pm · @ReplyReply to this comment ·
    • Mr C
      Mr C

      GIRL MS CHURCHILL-Y DO WE NEED TO QUOTE YOUR HATEFUL STATEMENTS REGARDING BLACKS?

      I ALREADY CALLED YOU OUT ON A FEW.
      BITCH PLEASE YOUR’RE THE ONLY ONE WHO USES THE TITLE “xenophobe”

      And as far as this statement goes:

      there are ten more like us out there in states where it counts than there are like you.

      What the fuck is that suppose to mean????? It only means one thing putting White against Black for a vote and not the issues.
      But girl you need to Motherfucking understand one thing. Typing is cheap if you really want to go there. Then queen MAN THE FUCK UP! Because none of us are SCARED! We can utter what the fuck we want and can back it up REMEMBER THAT BITCH And you and the one, and two of you can bring it on ALL YOU WANT

      If Obama loses he loses we’ll be glad with what history was made and simply move on. And he has made accomplishments and done things you just don’t like him, or any other Black person and frankly we could give a fuck. It’s queens like you who needs to get your mouth busted open. Then and only then you’ll learn to respect folks. After all we never considered him to be any Messiah you did. And if he was a White candidate would you say and feel the same thing? HELL NO.

      Jaroslaw, don’t waste your time with this young child. Can you imagine Bitch not even 30 yrs old yet and claims to have so much knowledge. I guess that scores one for the internet.

      DUMB ASS BITCH

      Sep 5, 2008 at 7:17 am · @ReplyReply to this comment ·

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