Since yesterday, I’ve seen the question posed several different ways, both mockingly and in dead seriousness: Does Mark Sanford’s blank-out on CNN (now being compared unfavorably to the Miss Teen USA contestant from SC), hurt his chances to be John McCain’s running mate?
Let me pause now and count to ten before answering that. In fact, let’s discuss an unrelated point, which is that I wouldn’t be able to answer the question either. It’s not the sort of question I think about. If you asked me to say what was different in the economic policies of Barack Obama and Bill Clinton, or John Kerry, or Alfred E. Neuman, I wouldn’t be able to answer you on the spur of the moment, and in fact would probably spurn the question as unimportant to me. Sanford’s problem is that he lacked the cool or presence of mind to do that. Perhaps he didn’t think he could get away with it. That’s too bad for him, because insouciance is what he does best, and once you take it off the table, he’s got a problem.
Now, as to our main point? Who out there still thinks Mark Sanford’s got a snowball’s chance on a Columbia sidewalk of being asked to carry John McCain’s freaking luggage, much less be his running mate? Didn’t we beat this horse to death some time back? And then beat it again? And again? What’s it doing clop-clopping down the street in the middle of summer?
I’m beginning to lose patience on this point, the whole concept is so offensively stupid.
Here’s a corollary to that: The presumption in Wolf Blitzer’s question is that Mark Sanford is somehow well situated to speak as an apologist for Sen. McCain. This is almost, but not quite, as idiotic as the idea of his being a running mate. There is probably no Republican in South Carolina LESS invested in the McCain campaign than Mark Sanford. This is the guy who expressed his "support" in the most insulting way possible, AFTER it no longer mattered — and after the other two most prominent Republican officeholders in the state had put their reps on the line for their chosen candidates.
I wouldn’t ask Mr. Sanford if he knew how to SPELL "McCain," much less ask him to defend his policy positions. Maybe that’s why I’m not in TV news…