Friday, August 22, 2008

I'll Get Back to You

I'm a big fan of telling details and small ironies. The telling detail is a moment that illuminates a larger situation. Irony you probably already get. It's especially nice when the two combine into one moment. That's why I loved it yesterday when McCain's attempts to paint Obama as the out of touch elitist ran into what should be a brick wall.

When McCain was asked how many houses he owns. His response? "I think -- I'll have my staff get to you. It's condominiums where -- I'll have them get to you."

Wow. This is the guy who's supposed to be in touch with the American people? He's not even in touch with himself or the fact that he owns seven houses valued at more than $13 million.

So here's the situation as I see it (or at least as it could be spun). McCain is so rich and/or addled that he's lost track of how many homes he actually owns. Either way, that can't be good for him. It either speaks to his out-of-touchness with the plight of the people or his out of touchness with his own life. I'd argue that the second scenario is probably worse than the first.

Not surprisingly, Obama is hitting this one hard in speeches and in an ad. What kills me is that it's not going to work. The narratives have been set and Obama is the elitist. McCain gets people. So even as McCain has more money, more homes, and can't even keep track of how many houses he owns, his staff is hitting at Obama for being elitist. Just ridiculous.

(Full disclosure: I had my staff check for me and I officially don't own a single home.)

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