Monday, October 13, 2008

Obama v. McCain III: The Wrath of McCahn

After much consideration, I've elected to forgo my weekly trivia night in Williamsburg on Wednesday to instead bring you, for one last time, Live Blogging coverage of the final presidential debate. We had 5 people total for the last debate, replacing our most liberal commenter with our most conservative one. Based on the largely negative reviews of the second debate, including one written here, and based on McCain continuing to flag in the polls, there's actually a chance, albeit slim, that this debate will have something worthwhile by way of content. Pundits keep talking about how McCain needs a game-changer, and this is perhaps his last, best opportunity to do so in front of a national audience. But what might that "game changer" be?

Substantively, there's little McCain can do in terms of policy offerings that are going to make people sit up and take notice. Unless he unveils some magic plan to cure what ails the economy (emphasis on magic), he's going to have to attack Obama and attack him hard. I'll bet even money that Reverend Wright gets mentioned tomorrow, and Obama's "association" with Bill Ayers is also quite likely to make its way into the dialogue---if not from the moderator, than through McCain himself. Expect Tony Rezko's name to make an appearance. I also would not be surprised if McCain is brainstorming with his advisers some graceful way to bring Louis Farrakhan's recent endorsement of Obama into the debate somehow. Whereas McCain and Palin have used the stump speeches to do the dirty work of their negative attacks---largely playing nice in the debates--- that is likely to end tomorrow night. McCain has shown a willingness to do whatever it takes to win this election, and now that time is short, this is the moment where he must rise (or sink) to the occasion.

And I hope he does. If there's one thing that has endeared me to Obama, it's been his thoughtful, measured, and reasonable responses to controversial issues that have his name stamped to them. I welcome attacks from McCain, if only because it will provide 60 million people the chance to see Obama under pressure...and see him respond as he has for the better part of the last two years.

Join me Wednesday night...and let's watch for ourselves.


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