With the intellectual equivalent of surrendering before the battle has actually started, the McCain campaign today stated that they would appreciate it if their VP candidate could do her first debate without any actual, you know, “debating” involved.
At the insistence of the McCain campaign, the Oct. 2 debate between the Republican nominee for vice president, Gov. Sarah Palin, and her Democratic rival, Senator Joseph R. Biden Jr., will have shorter question-and-answer segments than those for the presidential nominees, the advisers said. There will also be much less opportunity for free-wheeling, direct exchanges between the running mates.
McCain advisers said they had been concerned that a loose format could leave Ms. Palin, a relatively inexperienced debater, at a disadvantage and largely on the defensive.
The wrangling was chiefly between the McCain-Palin camp and the nonpartisan Commission on Presidential Debates, which is sponsoring the forums.
Commission members wanted a relaxed format that included time for unpredictable questioning and challenges between the two vice-presidential candidates. On Wednesday, the commission unanimously rejected a proposal sought by advisers to Ms. Palin and Senator John McCain of Arizona, the Republican presidential nominee, to have the moderator ask questions and the candidates answer, with no time for unfettered exchanges. Advisers to Mr. Biden say they were comfortable with either format.
So, in other words, Joe Biden is fine talking to anyone, anywhere, anytime, in any format and his boss isn’t going to freak out about it. Sarah Palin, by contrast, may be blinkingly-free of concern about doing anything she just wills herself to believe she’s capable of, her boss is so freaking terrified of her having to have a conversation in public with a Senator that he is willing to throw in the towel before entering the stadium regardless of how jaw-droppingly incompetent it makes her – or him – look.
AKMudraker at Mudflats correctly interprets the McCain campaign’s white-flag-waving bunker mentality in “McCain Blinks. Palin Not Ready for Prime Time”:
At this point, they are basically saying, “We know she’s going to lose, but we want her to lose less catastrophically. And we don’t really care that the American people will never get to see the woman who we want to be a heartbeat away from the highest office in the land engage in actual conversation, or be called out for her lack of knowledge. Allowing the debate to continue as is, would be far worse for us than being called out for giving head starts to ignorant people, and grading the debate on a curve.”
Indeed. They may as well issue a statement detailing the on-the-job experience she will have as VP – between inauguration day and Sen. McCain’s removal from office for medical reasons – that will mold this frail child into a world leader that the country will be Proud To Follow.
Do these people believe that the voting public consists of nothing but illiterate tundra farmers with bilateral frostbite? Do they think that a Witch Hunting Pastor will mesmerize us all into voting for someone who can’t even hold an open debate with one of her fellow American politicians? Do they think we are so incredibly stupid that we will fall for the line that this hyper-allergenic bubble-lady will be able to face down Vladimir Putin, Ahmadenijad, Chavez, Kim Jung-Il and the nefarious forces of the Wild World if she can’t have a single conversation with her own governmental colleague, Joe Biden?!?!?
No, I don’t think they do. I think the stories out of Utah I’ve been hearing are correct. They come from hard-core Republicans and they start like this: “I think McCain is trying to lose this on purpose. Here, let me explain…”