Tuesday, October 21, 2008

McCain seizes on Biden's "test his mettle" gaffe

The McCain camp has been jumping all over Sen. Joe Biden's remarks that if elected, Sen. Obama will be tested by a major international crisis within the first six months of his presidency. As reported by Sidecar, Biden, speaking at a campaign function in Seattle, prognosticated that the world is watching Sen. Obama and will seek to "test his mettle" in the first six months because of his perceived lack of experience.

Of course, based on historical analysis, almost EVERY president is tested in their first six months by an international crisis. For Kennedy, the example cited by Biden, it was the Bay of Pigs, a plan devised by the CIA under Eisenhower (not the Cuban Missile Crisis, which didn't occur until mid-1962). For Reagan it was Lebanon and Grenada, for Bush I it was the First Gulf War, for Clinton it was the bombing of the World Trade Center in '93, and for Bush II it was 9/11.

Both McCain and Palin have used the comment today in their campaign appearances. And I must say, McCain's approach today was the first time I've read his comments lately and thought, "wow, that's actually a great argument." Color me impressed. Of course, reminding voters concerned about your age may not be the greatest idea in the world, but I like the line:

“Sen. Biden referred to how Jack Kennedy was tested in the Cuban
missile crisis. My friends, I have a little personal experience in that. I was on board the USS Enterprise. I sat in the cockpit of the flight deck off of Cuba. I had a target. My friends, you know how close we came to a nuclear war. America will not have a president who needs to be tested. I've been tested, my friends.”

Courtesy of Politico.

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