Posts Tagged ‘John McCain’

From the towns of Dixville Notch and Hart’s Location, New Hampshire (with a combined population of 115), traditionally the first towns to vote on Election Day when the polls open at midnight.

Dixville Notch
McCain – 6
Obama – 15
Nader – 0

Hart’s Location
McCain – 10
Obama – 17
Nader – 0
Paul – 2

Thus begins today’s great exercise in democracy.

Update: According to Josh Marshall, this is the second time a Democratic candidate has won Dixville Notch since the midnight voting tradition began in 1948. The first was Hubert Humphrey in 1968.

Not a good outlook for McCain. Never in a million years did I think my projections would be more conservative than Karl Rove’s.

I don’t wanna be sedated.

These should keep you busy watching the returns come in tomorrow.

Five Thirty Eight
CNN Political Ticker
Daily Kos
Huffington Post
Marc Ambinder
Politico
Talking Points Memo
The Caucus
The Page

I and many of my friends and colleagues in the press been watching this campaign for two years and it all comes down to tomorrow. Amazing how it all went by so fast. Take some time to relax, get some rest, and savor the moment. Tomorrow is going to be a long day.

“In a globalized world, America’s president can shape lives worldwide. He is our president, too.”
Constanze Stelzenmüller, director of the Berlin office of the German Marshall Fund

Earlier, I posted a link to Politico’s list of the biggest gaffes of the campaign, while adding my own to the list. TIME Magazine has put together a much more thorough version of that list, which is well worth reading.

I had forgotten so many of these gaffes, and how they dominated the campaign cycle at one point or another. My revised list of big gaffes, based on political fallout or humor:

John McCain’s “Fundamentals of our economy” comment
Hillary Clinton ducking sniper fire in Bosnia
Phil Gramm’s “Nation of whiners” comment
Barack Obama’s 57 states comment
Mark Penn’s Colombian deal
Sarah Palin’s interview with Katie Couric
Barack Obama’s “Bitter” comment
Sarah Palin’s wardrobe
Joe Biden’s international test
Sarah Palin’s prank call
Mitt Romney: “Who Let the Dogs Out”
Barack Obama’s “spread the wealth” comment

Newsweek has a look at what went on behind the scenes before and after Palin got the infamous phone call.

The most shocking thing to me was that neither the campaign’s senior leadership (Steve Schmidt, Mark Salter, Rick Davis, et. al.) nor the candidate himself was brought into the loop when the preliminary calls came in. Given how carefully stage-managed Palin’s rollout was, especially when she was meeting foreign heads of state at the United Nations several weeks ago, I would have guessed that a call from the French president would have been run up the flagpole immediately. But as an unidentified senior McCain aide said, it should have raised red flags immediately.

According to one participant, who declined to be named, aides went back and forth venting their frustration. “Does anyone not think it’s strange that the French president would want to talk to a candidate in the final 72 hours of the campaign,” one senior McCain aide demanded, noting that the White House and the National Security Council would likely be involved in any such phone calls. “It’s appalling.” Bigger picture, the episode provides a glimpse at what have been increased tensions between the McCain plane and the Palin plane in the final weeks of the campaign. Aides have pushed back in recent days against stories that all is not well between the two camps, but it appears that may not be exactly true.

As MSNBC political analyst Lawrence O’Donnell pointed out, after taking into account the $150,000 shopping spree and now the prank call on top of that, Palin may well have the worst campaign staff in history.

Politico compiles the best of the 2008 cycle. They focused on the two presidential nominees, but I would expand the list to include some of the other characters we’ve seen in the 2008 race.

ONE-LINERS
Joe Biden hits Rudy Giuliani: “A noun, a verb and 9/11”
Sarah Palin on the difference between a hockey mom and a pitbull.
Bob Casey at the DNC: “That’s not a maverick, that’s a sidekick.”
Mike Huckabee: “Jesus was too smart to ever run for public office.”
John McCain on following Osama bin Laden to the gates of Hell.

GAFFES
Sarah Palin’s entire interview with Katie Couric
Hillary Clinton invoking the assassination of Bobby Kennedy during the primaries
Barack Obama’s “bitter” comments at a fundraiser
Carly Fiorina saying John McCain and Sarah Palin couldn’t run Hewlett Packard
John McCain: “Bomb-bomb-bomb, bomb-bomb Iran”

John Ensign, chairman of the NRSC gets in on the Palin-bashing.

CNN noticed something curious at a recent Palin rally in Florida:

POLK CITY, Florida (CNN) — At a boisterous Sarah Palin rally in Polk City, Florida on Saturday afternoon, one name was surprisingly absent from the campaign décor — John McCain’s.

Looking around the Fantasy of Flight aircraft hangar where the rally took place, one could see all the usual reminders that it was a pro-McCain event. There were two large “Country First” banners hung on the walls along with four enormous American flags meant to conjure the campaign’s underlying patriotic theme. Many of the men and women in the audience wore McCain hats and t-shirts.

But on closer inspection, the GOP nominee’s name was literally nowhere to be found on any of the official campaign signage distributed to supporters at the event.

Members of the audience proudly waved “Country First” placards as Palin delivered her stump speech. Those signs were paid for by the Republican National Committee.

The other sign handed out to supporters read “Florida is Palin Country,” but those signs were neither paid for by the Republican National Committee nor the McCain campaign. In small print, the signs were stamped with the line “Paid for and authorized by Putnam for Congress” — as in, the re-election campaign of Florida congressman Adam Putnam, whose district skirts Polk City.

In fact, Putnam’s name was considerably more prominent than was McCain’s — his campaign had placed a number of large “Putnam for Congress” banners around the event site.

TPM’s Greg Sargent has the schedules. This speaks volumes about the morale in the two campaigns and who’s got momentum.

McCain/Palin:
Alaska, Arizona, Colorado, Florida, Indiana, Iowa, Missouri, New Mexico, Nevada, North Carolina, Ohio, Pennsylvania, Virginia

Obama/Biden:
Colorado, Delaware, Florida, Indiana, Illinois, Missouri, Nevada, North Carolina, Ohio, Virginia

The final days of the campaign are going to be fought out by the candidates on the ground in Bush states, with the exception of Pennsylvania – which McCain needs to reach 270 votes, and the four states (Alaska, Arizona, Delaware and Illinois) where the candidates go to cast their ballot and watch the results come in. This has been the dynamic of the campaign for much of the final weeks. If somebody had told me four years ago that this year would come down to a handful of what were reliably Republican states for years, in some cases decades, I wouldn’t have believed it.