The transcript from John McCain’s interview with Brian Williams of NBC was released and in it, McCain made a joke about Obama running for Carter’s second term. Here’s the text:
“They need a little break from– from their gasoline taxes, and they — and they know that — we’ve got to get spending under control. And we’ve got to become independent of foreign oil. Sen. Obama says that I’m running for a Bush’s third terms. It seems to me he’s running for Jimmy Carter’s second. (LAUGHTER)”
This is a charge that’s been going around on the blogs for a while now. And, as is so often the case with the hard right, it is both self-indicting and stupidly wrong. Forget the fact that McCain seems incapable of anything other than an on-his-heels, you-too attack on Obama. “If I’m running for Bush’s third term, than he must be running for Carter’s second term.” The reality is that by making the comparison with Carter in response to the Bush comparison, he is drawing a corollary between Bush and Carter. He is saying, in effect, “Bush is terrible, like Carter, and don’t try and yoke me in with him, otherwise, I’m going to shoot one right back at you.” He is, essentially, acknowledging that it is as disgraceful to represent Bush’s third term as it is, in his mind, for Obama to represent Carter’s second.
But that begs the question, if supporting Bush is tantamount to supporting Carter, why does (and did) McCain support Bush? What is wrong with this candidate’s judgment that he continues to support the worst president in our nation’s history?
Secondly, and most importantly, the only reason why McCain can make a claim that Obama is running for Carter’s second term is because our country is on a slow boat to hell, and McCain knows it. So, let’s think about this for a minute. Who’s been in charge for lo these last seven years?
That’s right, best buddy Bush. The man you compromised your principles to support. The man who has driven this country into a ditch. Obama has nothing to do with the unfolding of Carter’s second term. George W. Bush does. In fact, Bush’s second term, could be Carter’s. And John McCain is, in part, directly responsible for that.
So the next time you hear McCain or some half-wit blogger make the Carter claim, just smile, and toss them another shovel. If we’re lucky, the grave they’re digging will be big enough for every neocon in Washington.