Monday, August 18, 2008

Saint McCain

The Sunday, 8/17/08 edition of CNN's Reliable Sources started with a fairly lengthy segment speculating on the sex life of a former Presidential and Vice-Presidential candidate from North Carolina. This makes even more ironic, and loathsome, comments made on the next segment- about the presidential forum hosted by Reverend Rick Warren the previous evening at his megachurch in California- about a current Presidential candidate from Arizona. Here is the relevant part of the transcript:

PASTOR RICK WARREN, SR. PASTOR, SADDLEBACK CHURCH: What would be, looking over your life -- everybody's got weaknesses, nobody is perfect -- would be the greatest moral failure in your life? SEN. BARACK OBAMA (D-IL), PRESIDENTIAL CANDIDATE: What I trace this to is a certain selfishness on my part. I was so obsessed with me and, you know, the reasons that I might be dissatisfied, that I couldn't focus on other people. SEN. JOHN McCain (R-AZ), PRESIDENTIAL CANDIDATE: My greatest moral failing -- and I have been a very imperfect person -- is the failure of my first marriage....

MASON: I don't know. I mean, I think McCain really did something extraordinary the way he answered that question, Howie. He addressed an issue that the campaign has been having a hard time figuring out how to deal with. They've wanted to confront it, it's out there on the Internet, it's something that Democrats are trying to use against McCain. So he put it out there, he acknowledged it. And he sort of inoculated himself against it. I think that's really going to help him. ...

KURTZ: Right. McCain has acknowledged that he was not faithful in his first marriage, but not necessarily before a national television audience.

Howie Kurtz is right! John McCain has acknowledged that he was not faithful in his first marriage, though not before a national television audience. And he still hasn't. The video played by CNN has the Senator saying "My greatest failing- and I have been a very imperfect person- is the failure of my first marriage."

"The failure of my first marriage." The cause of course, McCain did not acknowledge on this telecast, which would suggest that Julie Mason was merely awe-struck when she referred to "something extraordinary the way he answered that question," which the campaign is bravely "trying to confront" which the evil (unnamed) Democrats are "trying to use against McCain."

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I think McCain's behavior during his first marriage is reason 101 of 100 reasons to vote against him. But in a program in which a former presidential candidate (who has admitted his affair) is excoriated, it seems odd to congratulate a current presidential candidate- who has never admitted living nine months with first wife Carol Shepp while dating Cindy Hensley- for acknowledging a failed marriage which is on the record and undeniable.

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