McCain Believes He's Going to Lose

That’s my take on his sudden retreat from going after Obama on his shady associations and his “You don’t have to be afraid…” of Obama as President comment.  Why would McCain think he’s seeing the writing on the wall? Because this is what’s written on it:


This is a chart of John McCain’s tracking numbers overlaid with the S&P 500’s closing numbers.(created by State of the Union blog) It paints a pretty compelling picture. I have read that McCain’s internal polling paints an even grimmer picture.

It looks like Obama and the congressional leadership think he has it sewn up as well.

McCain, in his interview with Charlie Gibson (who managed to keep his frown and grimace rate to about a quarter of the Palin interview level) was asked: “Do you think this economic crisis is hurting you with voters?”  McCain’s answer was typically horrible and fumbling and unhelpful. Here’s how McCain should have answered:

“Well Charlie, in a fairer world it would be hurting my opponent, because it was the policies of his allies in his party that largely created this mess, while I and some of my fellow Republicans, including President Bush, have been warning about it for two years. But we don’t live in that fairer world. So, yes, it’s hurting my campaign, in part because you and your colleagues are in the tank for Obama and won’t report the truth.”

But McCain isn’t going to say anything like that because he’s a poor candidate. In fact, he’s the worst candidate the Republicans had for running against Mr. Cool.–just as Bob Dole was the worst choice among the contenders for running against Bill Clinton. Of course at the time McCain clinched the nomination, it wasn’t clear who the Dem nominee was going to be.

Of course, things could turn around. One wild card is the “Wilder Effect“–the tendency for many extreme sufferers of “white guilt” to tell pollsters they’re voting for a black candidate but do otherwise in the secrecy of the voting booth.

I suspect that the more the Democrats have shouted “racist” at every person who criticizes Obama, the more potentially pronounced the Wilder Effect has become. If the markets stabilize this coming week AND gas prices continue to come down AND some other unforeseen event actually works to McCain’s benefit (for a change)–the race could tighten back up.

If it does, it will be in spite of McCain the campaigner, not because of him.