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Last night on ABC News Charlie Gibson sat down with Senator John McCain and asked him point blank "are you the underdog?"

John McCain responded by saying that he is the underdog and that in fact he is surprised that the polls are as close as they are considering where the Republican "brand" is currently. I completely agree with Senator McCain on this point - why aren't the Democrats winning by 15% right now? We have maybe the least popular President in the history of the country running the show with an imbalanced and receding economy, a disastrous war without end, one scandal after another in the White House....

Yet a Senator who voted with that very same President 95% of the time is running virtually dead even with Barack Obama at this point in time. How is that possible? Or should I just throw up my arms and say 'hey, we elected George W Bush twice... nothing we do makes any real sense'?

I'm curious to hear what others think about this -

the full interview:

Originally posted to OmarLittle on Fri Jun 06, 2008 at 07:44 AM PDT.

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Comment Preferences

  •  Bwah! (5+ / 0-)

    Even McThuselah knows he's a loser.

    "But your flag decal won't get you into heaven anymore"--Prine 4090+ dead Americans. Bring them home.

    by Miss Blue on Fri Jun 06, 2008 at 07:47:06 AM PDT

    •  that's been my hunch at times.... (7+ / 0-)

      Rhetoric aside, McCain too often just doesn't seem to "want it" that badly.....doesn't have a fire in his belly anymore, to borrow a cliche.  I've often thought that, deep down, he might be realistic enough to actually see himself as the token opponent or sacrificial lamb.

      Remember the Alamo? Sen. Obama, tear down this (fire)wall.

      by Ericwmr on Fri Jun 06, 2008 at 07:54:07 AM PDT

      [ Parent ]

      •  Those awkward and inappropriate smiling fits did (2+ / 0-)
        Recommended by:
        mattman, Ericwmr

        almost seem self-saboteurial, perhaps subconsciously.

        Obama/McCaskill vs. McCain/Jindal? Call it a funny feeling.

        by ShadowSD on Fri Jun 06, 2008 at 07:56:37 AM PDT

        [ Parent ]

        •  That's not change you can believe in :) (2+ / 0-)
          Recommended by:
          mattman, Miss Blue

          Eh, that was painful to watch.  One of the folks watching with me that night asked aloud if he was practicing his own version of the Dubya smirk during that speech.

          After getting ripped apart for teleprompter skills the next morning, he makes a renewed push for those town hall meetings....A high-sounding idea that may be, but McCain may want to be careful what he wishes for.  With the "fighting a lady" (and fellow Democrat) part out of the way, Obama's going to be free to start swinging harder.

          Remember the Alamo? Sen. Obama, tear down this (fire)wall.

          by Ericwmr on Fri Jun 06, 2008 at 08:03:43 AM PDT

          [ Parent ]

  •  Well, now, the media (1+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:

    wouldn't have a horse race to carry on about for the next five months it that were the case, would they?

    Give it time, I suspect those polls will widen substantially when the public gets to know McSame for who he really is.

    "...and will to the best of my Ability, preserve, protect and defend the Constitution of the United States." --Barack Obama, January 20, 2009

    by jiordan on Fri Jun 06, 2008 at 07:48:06 AM PDT

  •  We need to do a better job defining McCain. (6+ / 0-)

    Most Americans have no idea that McCain has voted with the President 100% of the time this year. Most Americans buy into the media distortion that he is both a "maverick" who bucks party lines and a political moderate who does not garner the far-right wing views that we here at Daily Kos are all too familiar with.

    •  McCain has been in the (1+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:

      background of the MSM eye, but now that we have a nominee all eyes and ears will be on him...people will begin to know the Real John McCain...and it ain't so good! He is a mind changing bore. He is full of hot air just blowin' in the wind.

  •  More voter education on "new"McCain needed (6+ / 0-)

    Best I can estimate from the voting records, McCain sold off the last part of his soul somewhere around 03 or 04.  Chances are, too many indies and swing voters still look back fondly on the McCain of 2000 who took on Bush in the primaries. These people don't yet realize just how much evangelical ass kissing and general selling out has taken place in the last several years.

    Remember the Alamo? Sen. Obama, tear down this (fire)wall.

    by Ericwmr on Fri Jun 06, 2008 at 07:50:25 AM PDT

  •  Now that Hill is out...?,,, (1+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:

    the polls will change...I think we will see a shift in the next couple of weeks toward Obama. McCain and Obama side by side - no contest. But we do have a great deal of work ahead of us. Yes we Can!

    •  That GI Bill vote is a good starting point.. (2+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      the new blasphemy, TidBits

      I say let's go right after the "war hero" persona he's going to milk and put him on the defensive re: the Webb GI Bill.  That's something even hard working middle class white folks can get pissed about.

      Remember the Alamo? Sen. Obama, tear down this (fire)wall.

      by Ericwmr on Fri Jun 06, 2008 at 07:56:00 AM PDT

      [ Parent ]

    •  Looks like it's already starting (0+ / 0-)

      Could be a fluke, of course, but we may not need to wait weeks to see the bounce.  Rasmussen today:

      The Rasmussen Reports daily Presidential Tracking Poll for Friday shows what may be the beginning of a bounce for Barack Obama. Obama now attracts 45% of the vote while John McCain earns 40%. That five-point lead for Obama is up from a two-point advantage over the past couple of days. Before that, for much of last week, McCain had enjoyed a slight edge.

      When "leaners" are included, Obama now leads 48% to 43%. Leaners are survey respondents who initially do not favor either candidate but indicate their support on a follow-up question (see daily results). One week ago today, McCain had the edge over Obama, 46% to 43%.

      Sim, a gente pode!

      by SLKRR on Fri Jun 06, 2008 at 08:50:55 AM PDT

      [ Parent ]

  •  It's still very early in the process (1+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:

    and McCain has greatly benefited from the media narrative of him as a "maverick," a "moderate," a "reforemer" etc., none of which he is. Over time, the more people see and hear, the more likely they are to see him as yet another Bush.

    Stop bitching and start a revolution!

    by Randian on Fri Jun 06, 2008 at 07:53:17 AM PDT

  •  lack of covergae (5+ / 0-)

    unless you are a political junkie most people believe that JMC 2008 is the same JMC 2000 his turn to the hard right is not widely know, just yesterday one of his surrogates was pushing the gang of 14 (he now promises more Scalias) and immigration reform (he is now 100% fence first) like  the last 12 months never happened.

    The fact that he is now in the tank for every despicable GOP position and he doesn't have  plans but a bunch of platitudes as platform is a very well guarded secret by his base (the press)

    "First they ignore you, then they ridicule you, then they fight you, then you win." -- Mahatma Gandhi

    by IamTheJudge on Fri Jun 06, 2008 at 07:54:09 AM PDT

  •  It's an artifact (1+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:

    It's been Obama v Hillary dividing the nation. Obama has not had a chance to really define or contrast McCain. I predict that the polls will show a steady decline for McSame as the people get to see, hear and contrast to two candidates. It's really no contest at all, and McCain is cruising on his name recognition and reputation as a maverick. I'm predicting a landslide election for Obama. We haven't seen that for a while, but it happens. He has the broad interest and never fails to impress. I'm guessing at a fifteen point jump at the Convention.

    •  Yep dividing the nation and the Democratic Party (1+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      The Wizard

      all these polls are asking one question-Obama or McSame.  They fail to point out that you are asking Democrates who, for the past 4 months, have been asked another important question-Hillary or Obama.

      Democrates are divided, some who are questioned are fresh from voting in the primaries, even a few just days ago.

      I think(hope and pray as well) that after the convention the polls will bounce hard, like happy fun ball did.

      "We need an energy bill that encourages consumption." --Trenton, N.J., Sept. 23, 2002-GWB

      by meatwad420 on Fri Jun 06, 2008 at 08:12:50 AM PDT

      [ Parent ]

  •  Expectations game (1+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:

    Yadda yadda yadda.

    What McCain really needs to worry about is turnout.  Those "likely voters" who side with McCain are not as "likely" as they describe themselves, methinks.  And the reason is simple.  Who does he excite?

    "A person is as free as they believe themselves to be off." - Fortune cookie

    by The Termite on Fri Jun 06, 2008 at 07:58:26 AM PDT

    •  McCain needs to worry bout both sides of "turnout (1+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      The Termite

      Republicans aren't exactly thrilled about McCain to begin with, and now they don't even get to run against the woman they've been hammering on for the last 16 years.  Meanwhile, Democrats are fired up like we haven't seen in quite a while.  Even if the youth vote doesn't pan out as optimistically as people expect, reliable Democrats, especially African Americans, ought to be out in startling numberrs.  As voter suppression games go, Obama's people will see that coming miles away and take measures accordingly.  If I were McCain, I'd worry.

      Remember the Alamo? Sen. Obama, tear down this (fire)wall.

      by Ericwmr on Fri Jun 06, 2008 at 08:13:25 AM PDT

      [ Parent ]

  •  Maybe it's the coalition (0+ / 0-)

    of Rednecks for Jesus who are terrified of black poeple, head in the sand moderates who hate what Bush has done but are even more frightened of the slightest change, dipshits who think invading Iraq was a noble cause done incompetently, poeple who are frightened by the image of 75,000 fans screaming for anyone other than the Dallas Cowboys, Promise Keepers, feminists over 55, and rational rich folks who like what a corporate free-for-all does for their 401k's but don't give a rat's ass about decency and the human condition.

  •  We elected GWB, maybe once! (0+ / 0-)

    But how was it close enough to be stolen?

    "On some great and glorious day the plain folks of the land will reach their heart's desire at last and the White House will be adorned by a downright moron."

    by Texasblu on Fri Jun 06, 2008 at 08:02:44 AM PDT

  •  Partly it's the politics of low expectations. (2+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    Ericwmr, the new blasphemy

    Partly it's the Clinton hangover.  Painting himself as an underdog, McCain hopes to gain sympathy votes.  As others have said, however, once the Dems unite, the polls will shift, but by how much depends on how much the American people will pity McCain, because I can't see any other reason to support him

    •  Methinks "expectations" are on our side this time (0+ / 0-)

      Playing up Obama's "inexperience" and making the "empty suit" remarks are the same sort of mistakes our candidates made with ush had to do was George W. Bush. By the time the debates rolled around, all Bush had to do was show up for the debate without pooping his pants to be given a basic pass by the public.

      Now, I KNOW Obama is no Dubya and really hate making this comparison of the two, but I do believe that same dynamic is in play to our benefit this time.  McCain, for all his media love, will tout his "experience" in the Senate so much that the psychological bar is set much higher for him.

      Remember the Alamo? Sen. Obama, tear down this (fire)wall.

      by Ericwmr on Fri Jun 06, 2008 at 08:08:41 AM PDT

      [ Parent ]

  •  Just wanted to comment (0+ / 0-)

    on your username. Obviously you're a fan of the best show to ever grace a TV screen, The Wire. Excellent choice!

    Btw, as the old saying goes, if Obama's even, he's leavin'!

  •  traditions run deep (1+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:

    To get people to switch from Republican to voting for a Democrat requires that you get people to admit the possibility that they've been wrong... and maybe even wrong their entire life.  That's not an easy thing to do, because few people are strong and secure enough to admit wrongness, even to themselves.  They don't like to question themselves.

    So, this will still be a close race, no matter how great the Democratic candidate is, or how crappy the Republican.  Too many people will stick by their "brand," even if it sucks.  It's just how humans are.

    "I am a comedian and poet, so anything that doesn't get a laugh ... is a poem." - Bill Hicks

    by shadetree mortician on Fri Jun 06, 2008 at 08:12:26 AM PDT

  •  simple (2+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    Catte Nappe, Ericwmr

    because McCain has been polling against TWO Democrats.  And at least 1/5 of Hillary's supporters are answering "McCain" when asked about the head-to-head Obama/McCain matchup.

    Gentlemen, you can't fight in here! This is the War Room! - President Merkin Muffley

    by AlyoshaKaramazov on Fri Jun 06, 2008 at 08:14:08 AM PDT

    •  I certainly hope so (0+ / 0-)

      I certainly hope that this is the case and it seems to be the popular consensus amongst people posting here.

      Its just hard to believe that a Democrat would be dead even regardless of the reason. The poll questions pit the two of them in a hypothetical head to head match so its hard to believe that a LOT of Clinton supporters would say McCain in that instance.

      Its hard to say for sure... we'll see how the numbers shake out in the coming months.

    •  good point... (0+ / 0-)

      ...Clinton supporters pumping up McCain either out of spite or just to freep the polls, even if the majority eventually get over it and back the Democratic nominee.  At the rate these polls are going though, things should start looking good despite whatever slice of the bitter-enders we don't eventually recapture.

      Maybe Hillary really will do the right thing tomorrow and going forward.

      Remember the Alamo? Sen. Obama, tear down this (fire)wall.

      by Ericwmr on Fri Jun 06, 2008 at 08:18:51 AM PDT

      [ Parent ]

  •  I predict if Obama is ahead by double digits (1+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:

    There will be a Repug Convention fight.

    •  Who would they replace him with? (0+ / 0-)

      ...Sure I'd love to see the GOP in chaos at their convention, but I can't think of any GOP prospect who can compete for the middle like McCain can at the moment. Nominating him was really the only chance in Hell they had this year, and they and humble enough to realize that.

      Heheheh chaos.

      Remember the Alamo? Sen. Obama, tear down this (fire)wall.

      by Ericwmr on Fri Jun 06, 2008 at 08:21:02 AM PDT

      [ Parent ]

  •  It Won't be close for long (1+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:

    In the Rassmussen tracking poll McCain was up by two on Monday. He's down by FIVE today.  Obama's not splitting his support anymore now that Hillary is out.  Get ready for a double digit Obama advantage.

  •  In Hartford, CT last week... (0+ / 0-)

    We, Americans, left a 76 year old man who had been flattened by a car to die in the middle of the street last week.  He was hit as two cars were trying to pass (illegally) another car on a small, two lane road near a small shopping plaza strip.  He dodged one car, then was literally hit head on by the other.  

    Car after car drove by, and dozens of people just stood there looking at his motionless body, crumpled in the middle of the street, and then moving on.  Some cars veered to avoid his body, then drove on.

    One car, parked on the side of the road, the driver got in, backed up and drove off.

    Another man, looking like he was eating something, walked across the street, literally no more than 5 feet from the guy, looking at him as he walked to the sidewalk, still eating.

    And you wonder WHY America is keeping McCain up in the polls (or, why Obama isn't running away in the polls)?

    I watched the video of the man (now paralyzed for life), and simply can't believe what I saw.  Living in a country like this, we get what we deserve.

    It's called laziness, inaction (let someone else deal with it), indifference (my vote won't matter)... call it what you want.

    I was disgusted with America when I saw that video, and we don't deserve someone as good as Obama.  THAT's why McCain is so close.

    An open mind and a closed mouth will increase your knowledge and decrease your explanations.

    by Kretgar on Fri Jun 06, 2008 at 08:39:17 AM PDT

    •  I too live in CT (0+ / 0-)

      and cannot believe what I saw. It is incomprehensible! I cannot believe that human beings watched another human being hurt in the street and not one, single person stopped to help. And only four calls to 911.

      All is not lost though. I was in a Bridgeport CT some months ago and a Puerto Rican teenager, around 15 years of age, was hit and thrown onto the sidewalk. The car that hit her stopped, two other drivers seeing the accident stopped, around 15 people of all races and ages stopped. There were big burly, young black men, brawny PR men, old white woman, young whites, blacks and PR. Even children. I couldn't even get into the inner circle to help as there were 2 rows of people literally kneeling down around her, talking to her, telling her not to move. When I called 911, the operator told me they have already received a number of calls about the accident. As proactive as I am, it turned out that my role was only to be a caller to 911. I as heartened by what I saw that day as I am just sickened by that incident in Hartford.

      Bob Marley: Don't let them fool ya. Or even try to school ya...

      by JoanMar on Fri Jun 06, 2008 at 09:02:49 AM PDT

      [ Parent ]

    •  Truly Sad, reminded me of (0+ / 0-)

      the Kitty Genovese case and the psychology of crowds. Its amazing what people will allow to happen around them sometimes.

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