I have to admit that I read the announcement that John McCain was suspending his presidential campaign to help deal with the financial crisis with a certain amount of amazement. I mean, here was a guy who was willing to put his own presidential aspirations on hold so close to the election in order to focus on the work that the country needs to do right now. He's not thinking of himself, just his country.
Wait a minute.
Isn't this the guy who's running on the slogan that he'll always put the country first? Well, how convenient for him. By saying that he's stopping campaigning, he's actually still campaigning. I bet they were really toasting themselves over at McCain headquarters for that little bit of campaign jiu jitsu.
Maybe I'm just overly cynical, but this strikes me as little more than a cheap political gimmick. Interestingly, it seems like we've been seeing more and more of those from the McCain campaign as time goes on. First he was putting country first by suspending the convention when Hurrican Gustav approached. Now he's putting the country first by suspending his campaign while the financial crisis gets dealt with. I've read that he doesn't like campaigning very much, but come on.
The fact is, does stopping a campaign and not running political ads for a week actually help the economy? Is that really what's going to put Wall Street back on the road to fiscal solvency? Is John "I don't really know much about the economy" McCain really going to be in a good position to assist in complex negotiations about how to bail out Wall Street? Is this anything other than a political gimmick?
I think it's pretty obvious that the answer to all of those questions is a single, resounding NO.