For the past few days, I have been seeing signs that John McCain wasn’t comfortable with the insinuations that Barack Obama is a Muslim or a terrorist, and this evening at a Minnesota town hall meeting, he defended Obama when one of his supporters called him an Arab terrorist.
The woman began her question with, “I’m scared of Barack Obama… he’s an Arab terrorist…” She didn’t get a chance to continue because McCain grabbed the microphone out of her hand and said, “No, no ma’am. He’s a decent family man with whom I happen to have some disagreements.” McCain did his usual stump speech, but it is clear that he came into Lakeville, MN ready to make a point.
He went out of his way to stress his respect for Obama, “I respect Sen. Obama and his accomplishments.” The crowd booed. McCain got angry and continued, “I want EVERYONE to be respectful, and lets make sure we are.” It is looked like McCain definitely had an agenda to deal with these out of control smears . A woman later said that she was afraid to raise her child in a world where Obama was president, and McCain replied, “Well, I don’t want him to be president, either. I wouldn’t be running if I did. But, you don’t have to be scared to have him be President of the United States.”
This shift in attitude has been building since Palin accused Obama of palling around with terrorist last weekend. After the backlash on the Ayers attacks started the campaign stopped calling Obama and a terrorist and starting claiming that Obama had been dishonest about his association with Ayers. Next came the statement telling his fellow Republicans to stop using Obama’s middle name in attacks, and today, McCain defends Obama as a decent guy who nobody should be afraid of.
To a guy like McCain it is one thing to question an opponent’s honesty and positions, but it quite different to call him a terrorist. To McCain, honor is very important, and I think what he has been seeing this week in the crowds at his rallies was something that he was ashamed of. What happened this evening was something that the John McCain of 2000 would have done. Even though he got booed by his own crowd, he delivered some real straight talk.
All that being said, it seems like McCain is having trouble controlling some elements in his campaign, so I doubt that these Obama is a Arab terrorist smears will stop. I think John McCain realizes something that these right wing zanies at his rallies don’t. He has absolutely no chance of winning this election, if his supporters push the Obama is a terrorist line. McCain is fond of saying that he would lose an election to win a war, and tonight he revealed that he personally may be unwilling win an election dishonorably.
Quotes came from Swampland