The hero arrives, where’s the crowd?

Helloooooo….is anyone there?

That’s what the Old Guy is asking this morning.  After declaring that presidential politics should be set aside until the bail-out was bailed-in,  John is shocked that his own party isn’t cheering his arrival in Washington to solve the problem.

Maybe it has something to do with the way he did it.  Or maybe it’s because it makes them look like they are incompetent, obstructionist or both.  That’s not a good thing in an election year when it’s tough enough to be a Republican.

John was the kick-off speaker at the Clinton Global Initiative conference and took the initiative by promoting himself as the savior of the bailout plan…as long as it included some things that had already been agreed to by both parties and the White House.  “I’m an old fighter pilot and in a time of crisis it’s all hands on deck.”

Parachuting in when the deal was almost resolved not only injects presidential politics into the crisis but it risks undoing what already has been agreed to.  Bush’s accomodation to the Old Guy by scheduling a photo-op at the White House is the final gasp of a unpopular president that is intended to improve the Old Guy’s standing in the polls.

Obama says to McCain “let’s issue a joint statement urging the parties to do the right thing.”  McCain decides to leapfrog Obama, puts on his flying goggles and says “you need me in Washington…I’m a uniter.”  Right…and some folks will probably buy into that fantasy.

In a worst case situation, McCain shows up at the White House and says he doesn’t like the plan.  Not because of it’s content.  But because he wants to drag it out until he thinks he’s made enough political points to justify his presence in Washington.  If I was behind in the polls and didn’t care about anything except getting elected I might give serious consideration to that ploy.

Flailing about trying to change the Old Guy’s negative poll trends does not bode well for him.  Not coming to the first debate would only cause Rome to burn faster.  My prediction is that the debate will go on with McCain filling a chair.  He may be a flip-flopper and a down in the dirt campaigner but he’s not stupid.

No not stupid, but certainly rash and another example of shooting from the hip.  Jonathan Alter in the current Newsweek reminds us of the Old Guy’s explosive temper.

“The thought of his being president sends a cold chill down my spine”, Republican Sen. Thad Cochran told The Boston Globe in January.  “He is erratic.  He is hotheaded.  He loses his temper and he worries me.” Cochran, a McCain supporter, now says McCain has learned to control his emotions better. But I’ve spoken to four senators and two former senators in recent weeks who believe Cochran’s concerns are widely shared in the Senate. Five of the six think that McCain is temperamentally unsuited to the presidency. None would speak for the record.

Quite a combination.  A thirst for the presidency, rashness, and a hipshooter.  Sound familiar?

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