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No wonder why the McCain campaign wants to talk about Ayers.

This is potentially explosive because it cuts into McCain's base, which he can ill afford to lose.  I can't believe that for all of the pandering and compromising that McCain has done, that he would try to prove his maverick credentials by standing alone in calling for cuts to Medicare -- especially in the next term when demand will explode with the Baby Boomers retiring.  This goes beyond tone deafness, and ventures into Phil Gramm's reckless territory of dismissing anyone who lives everyday economic reality as whiners and mental depression sufferers.  

My parents are staunch conservatives who despise Bush because he busted the Federal budget and invaded the wrong country (they actually thought that the sabre rattling should have been directed towards North Korea).  But, they are also retirees who will defend their Social Security and Medicare benefits with their votes.  

My parents don't like either candidate and for all I know they might leave the Presidential boxes on their ballots blank.  They'll still vote for conservative local and state candidates, and keep their streak alive by voting NO on every bond measure on the ballot.  But, they are the swing voters that would ordinarily be swayed towards McCain.  Any threatened cutbacks to Medicare would very likely push them into the Obama column.  

Medicare (as well as social security) is a basic bread-and-butter issue with them.  They've paid off their house, and are content to live within modest means with no debt.  Tax cuts don't mean as much to them nowadays because their income's not very high.  While they want to see big slashes to the federal budget, they also see the need for Medicare and Social Security, which were line item deductions on their paychecks for decades.  They paid into the system for many years, and in their view it's now their turn to collect from it.  Any politician that proposes to fundamentally change that will not get my parents' vote, no matter how much they might otherwise agree with that candidate.  Medicare and Social Security are their political third rail -- touch it and you're toast.

These revelations just keep giving new ammo for the Obama campaign to use in the closing weeks of the Presidential race.  Medicare cuts and McCain's votes against veteran's benefits are political dynamite, and I have a feeling that once this guilt-by-association pissing match concludes, Obama will go on the offensive.

The themes are all too easy to convey, and very difficult for McCain to defend against.  It's a very simple bumper sticker-length meme -- "John McCain loves war, but hates veterans" and "John McCain thinks billionaires pay too much, and seniors don't pay enough."  Spring these themes in the battleground states with two weeks to go, and this election turns into an Obama landslide.

Originally posted to Woochifer on Mon Oct 06, 2008 at 01:44 PM PDT.

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Comment Preferences

  •  Why are you here? (5+ / 0-)

    And not on the phone tellig your parents? Go!

    "You know, God bless him, bless his heart, president of the United States, a total failure."

    by RandySF on Mon Oct 06, 2008 at 01:47:00 PM PDT

    •  Believe me, I've been trying! (2+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      bethcf4p, SlackwareGrrl

      But, I learned a long time ago that it's hard to change 50+ years of consistency on their issues (i.e., lower taxes, states rights, smaller government, strong defense, get the govt out of my bedroom, etc.)!  Sometimes I think I'm likelier to morph into Archie Bunker than see my dad vote for any bond measure.  They gripe about the Republican party all the time (though they grip more about Democrats), which is why they are not Republicans.  

      McCain should have been a shoo in for them, but his embrace of the Bush policies and tactics have turned them off big time.  They're also very wary of Obama (and honestly, it doesn't help that he's black), but if they think he'll protect Social Security and Medicare while McCain will attempt to decimate those programs, they'll vote for Obama.  

  •  Hope I'm not jumping your tip jar... (5+ / 0-)

    I agree.  My husband's parents -- Republicans -- just lost their GM health insurance as GM retirees.  Medicare is their only coverage.

    This could be devistating to them.

    "Barack Obama understands the most important barrel of oil is the one you don't use." -- Brian Schweitzer

    by jules4sail on Mon Oct 06, 2008 at 01:49:20 PM PDT

  •  Add in McCain privatizing Social Security (3+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    Realistic Idealist, JohnGor0, soms

    and what do you have? Landslide!!!!

    •  Woochifer,youcouldsendyourparentsthisdiary... (0+ / 0-)

      ... on McCain's 10 year long support for the privatization of Social Security.

      The diary details how McCain has demonstrated his support for the privatization of Social Security with his votes, in speeches, his public statements, and through his campaign literature. Try as he may, McCain cannot run from his clear track record on the issue! It includes endnotes identifying all of the sources relied for the benefit of skeptical readers...

      Great diary, btw.

  •  McGrumpy can kiss Florida goodbye! n/t (3+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    True North, JohnGor0, soms

    "Barack Obama understands the most important barrel of oil is the one you don't use." -- Brian Schweitzer

    by jules4sail on Mon Oct 06, 2008 at 01:50:34 PM PDT

  •  Nobody's talking about this (2+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    True North, soms

    but McCain wasn't putting away Arizona before this idiocy. If seniors shift a little more towards Obama, Arizona could seriously be in play.

    However, if the country numbers shift 2-3 more points, I would think another half dozen states come into play (MS, WV, GA, ND, MT).

    klaatu barada nikto

    by JohnGor0 on Mon Oct 06, 2008 at 01:50:49 PM PDT

    •  But they should be... (3+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      True North, JohnGor0, soms

      we already are seeing a huge swing to Obama from Seniors.  This should be the final nail in the proverbial coffin.

      "Barack Obama understands the most important barrel of oil is the one you don't use." -- Brian Schweitzer

      by jules4sail on Mon Oct 06, 2008 at 01:54:25 PM PDT

      [ Parent ]

      •  Are they (JSM's HQ) really this stupid? (0+ / 0-)

        I am not kidding, your polling numbers are in free fall, your campaign is about 24/7 recycled smears, and the only policy you decide to point out is one that is going to hurt you badly with the only demographic you are doing OK?

        This is a repeat of the ...we will balance the budget ($450B deficit) by cutting earmarks ($18B), do they have any idea what they are talking about?

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

        by IamTheJudge on Mon Oct 06, 2008 at 02:08:06 PM PDT

        [ Parent ]

      •  Yep, this is political suicide (0+ / 0-)

        Makes you wonder who McCain's trying to appease by making this kind of proposal, knowing how politically tone deaf a move this is.

  •  I'm on Medicare.... (1+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:

    and damn lucky, since in a few decades there will not be the money to continue it.  But right now it is being paid for.

    McCain may have lost the election, for sure, by enough not to steal it, with this pronouncement.

    Doesn't he know that the Medicare crowd votes in a higher percentage than any other demographic.

    Now, he could also save a ton by cutting the pensions of ex military officers.   Somehow that never occurred to him.

  •  Obama needs commercials on this (1+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    Realistic Idealist

    "I was judged eventually, after three years, of using, quote, poor judgment, and I agree with that assessment." -- McCain on Keating 5

    by noofsh on Mon Oct 06, 2008 at 03:13:23 PM PDT

  •  'The Third Rail' of politics (0+ / 0-)

    McCain has jumped out of the plane without a parachute, 'golden' or otherwise.  In Arkansas, politicians get beat on this issue even if it's only an unfounded rumor.  Remember those older white voters that can't bring themselves to vote for Obama? They will vote for Obama and hang McCain in effigy if they find this out.  I'm damned sure telling everyone I know.

    "Don't piss down my back and tell me it's raining!" Renee Zellweiger in "Cold Mountain"

    by Arkieboy on Mon Oct 06, 2008 at 07:04:51 PM PDT

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