November 6, 2008 Leave a comment
After a day of celebration, relaxation and pride (remember the day after the 2004 election? What a difference around the world, eh?), it is time to get back to the hard work of political punditry and that, of course, means post mortems on the campaigns.
The big game today seems to be “what went wrong” for John McCain and Newsweek goes right for the jugular, asking if the McCampaign was “the worst ever.”
It is tough to say it was the worst campaign ever, but it certainly ranks among them. According to Newsweek, the reason it is the worst comes down to two words: Sarah Palin.
… Team McCain ran a campaign that ranks on the bottom of this list. This was an aimless and chaotic operation made worse by poor choices at key moments. Their first mistake was picking Gov. Sarah Palin.
Actually, this was NOT their “first mistake.” However, Palin was the Gateway Meme, the first look behind the curtain that allowed the general public to see how everything Johnny Mac said was like a turd in the punchbowl that cannot be denied.
By picking Palin, McCain simultaneously eliminated his own best argument against Senator Obama—the limited experience of his opponent—while compounding his own most negative image, that of someone who was erratic and out of control. The pick also fueled the feeling that grew throughout September and October that the Republican candidate was willing to take any step necessary to win the campaign. The Palin pick made every decision that followed seem purely political.
Like Katrina pulled back the curtain on the Bush administration, Sarah Palin revealed McCain as willing to do or say anything to get elected, all with little to no forethought.
And that’s no way to run a campaign, let alone a government. Read more of this post