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Will candidates' wives play a role?

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Posted: Friday, June 20, 2008 10:00 pm

I'm reviewing the two presidential candidates to see which one has the advantage in intangibles.

Republican Sen. John McCain's home base doesn't amount to much. McCain comes from the electoral vote-poor Arizona (it has 10), a state that will vote for any GOP candidate.

McCain's opponent, Sen. Barack Obama, represents Illinois with a healthy 21 electoral votes. But Illinois is automatic for any Democrat. Ronald Reagan was the last Republican to carry Illinois - 20 years and five elections ago.

Many analysts predict that the vice-presidential nominees might determine who wins. I disagree. In 2004, John Edwards couldn't deliver North Carolina to the head of the Democratic ticket, John Kerry.

And in 2000, Dick Cheney had no home base. You'll recall that Cheney lived in Texas. But when someone found out that the Constitution prohibits the president and vice president from being inhabitants of the same state then - presto, chango - Cheney suddenly lived in Wyoming.

Not that it mattered to Bush electoral vote-wise anyway. Bush had Texas in the bag. Wyoming added only a paltry three votes to the party.

Pundits say that Obama is smoother than McCain and will eat him up in their head-to-head debates.

But despite being incoherent on many occasions during the first four years of his presidency, Bush forged ahead. Kerry was the more eloquent in their 2004 debates. What good did it do him?

What about the first ladies in waiting?

While many Americans are ready to elect a mixed-race president, some have deep reservations about Michelle Obama, Barack's all-black wife who has a chip on her shoulder. According Michelle, she only recently became a "proud" American.

But Cindy McCain has image problems galore. The heiress to a beer fortune, Mrs. McCain has been addicted to prescription drugs and has had a lot of plastic surgery. And Cindy stole another woman's husband. No one likes a home-wrecker, especially when she owns a jet, has dyed platinum hair and wears designer clothes.

If Cindy's a home wrecker, then that makes John an adulterer.

Again, McCain's philandering may not matter. Way back in 1828, John Quincy Adams questioned - to no avail in his presidential re-election bid - the legality of his rival Andrew Jackson's marriage (there were bureaucratic foul-ups).

Six decades later, according to rumors that he did not deny, bachelor Grover Cleveland fathered a son, but was still elected.

Finally in 1992, Bill Clinton admitted that he had "caused pain" in his marriage but won the presidency handily.

McCain's indiscretions are more shameless than any adulterous president. His ex-wife, Carol Shepp, had been disfigured in an auto accident while McCain was in Vietnam. When McCain returned, he embarked on a series of extramarital relationships before he met Cindy and unceremoniously dumped the crippled Shepp.

Since neither his wife nor his power of persuasion are likely to influence many voters, McCain will count heavily on his military record to take him to the White House.

But why should he put any faith in that? George Herbert Walker Bush and Bob Dole, both true World War II heroes, lost overwhelmingly to Clinton, a draft dodger.

And before Kerry's campaign could get off the ground, his decorated Vietnam service was hotly debated and soon became a liability. After Karl Rove got through with Kerry, half the nation thought he spent his two Southeast Asian tours as a Viet Cong agent.

Boiled down to its bare bones, the election comes down to this: Obama is a black, liberal Democrat running in a predominantly white, moderate America.

McCain is in the unenviable position of being a Republican trying to replace the most disliked Republican in American history. Worse, McCain shares many of Bush's unpopular views on Iraq, immigration and free trade.

For voters, Obama and McCain represent a challenging November choice. The election's outcome will depend on how many angry citizens show up to express their outrage at America's demise or stay away as an expression of their frustration with the meager presidential pickings.

As for me, I'm sticking to my long-held aversion to major political party candidates. I'll vote - but not for either of them.

Joe Guzzardi is an instructor at the Lincoln Tech Academy. Contact him at guzzjoe@yahoo.com.

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Welcome to the discussion.

49 comments:

  • posted at 1:59 pm on Tue, Jun 24, 2008.

    Posts:

    No, JD, I'm not suggesting anyone vote for McCain or Obama. But you must admit, being raised in a certain environment will groom them to be good at that profession. Just like the Andretti family in racing, the Griffey family in baseball, and the Barrymores in acting, some people go into a profession more qualified than others. Whether nature, or nurture, they all seem to have a leg up on their competition. I just think McCain has the background and experience advantage over Obama. Whether people find that an important attribute at the polls remains to be seen.

     
  • posted at 4:57 am on Tue, Jun 24, 2008.

    Posts:

    From a practical standpoint, you're probably right.From an electoral standpoint . . . let me have my delusions!Seriously, I hope you aren't seriously maintaining that we should vote for or against someone based on their family backgrounds?

     
  • posted at 4:03 am on Tue, Jun 24, 2008.

    Posts:

    JD, tell that to the Kennedys.

     
  • posted at 3:52 am on Tue, Jun 24, 2008.

    Posts:

    Also JD, McCain comes from good stock, willing to give their lives in service to their country. His father and grandfather were both Admirals. If Obama has a prayer in this election, it's that qualifications and experience are highly ignored. "Cogito, you've made some good points, but this isn't one of them. Surely I don't need to remind you that we live in a country where it didn't matter worth a d**n what kind of "stock" you came from or who your parents were.

     
  • posted at 2:46 am on Tue, Jun 24, 2008.

    Posts:

    Papercut, Did you know Jim Jones??? I was 10th out of 10 in deep sea divers school, so what I still did my job and didnt have a scarlet letteron my forehead. All the folks caping on McCains flying ability comefrom the Huffington post, The Daily Kos, The Democratic Undergroundand the Vietnam Vets Against McCain. To call these folks less thancredible would do them a major favor. Bottom dwellers or pond scumis more like it. McCain could have saved his butt when he was hit byrolling out and made it to the coast ,punched out and would have been picked up by a rescue chopper but he didnt do that did he. No he finishedthe job and it cost him. Naval fighter pilots are the best of the best, top of his Class or bottom he was a Carrier qualified fighter pilot. The firstCruise I made to Westpac we operated with the USS Midway CV 41in 6 months we lost 7 planes and 3 pilots and no they werent bad pilotsit proves how dangerous Naval flying is. Papercut open your mind itreally doesnt hurt.

     
  • posted at 5:11 pm on Mon, Jun 23, 2008.

    Posts:

    Also papercut, only those at the top of flight school training qualify to be fighter pilots. The rest fly everything else.

     
  • posted at 5:10 pm on Mon, Jun 23, 2008.

    Posts:

    Papercut, what about Clinton and his draft dodging letter? And his committing the treasonous act of protesting the Vietnam war on foreign soil. As for GWs supposed AWOL, what flavor is that Kool Aid?

     
  • posted at 4:56 pm on Mon, Jun 23, 2008.

    Posts:

    gator, I guess his accurate bombings got him on the bottom of the flight school class? And still the worst pilot in his squadron?Again, read the whole story, not just the first sentence. And research why he was treated as a special prisoner in a POW hospital, not a camp. The neocons swiftboated Kerry and now it's McCain's turn to hear the truth. He bragged about being considered for admiral, and it was proven he spread that rumor to try to make himself look good to his father and grandfather. It's been proven to be a bald faced lie. He's just another hero, like GW Bush and his desertion. Read the other 609pages or so that were held back by his campaign. They're public record. You won't like what you read.

     
  • posted at 4:06 pm on Mon, Jun 23, 2008.

    Posts:

    Pappercut,Just for you read very slowly The citations refer to his "accurate ordnance delivery" and his "aggressive and skillful airmanship now does thatsound like a bad pilot to you

     
  • posted at 3:50 pm on Mon, Jun 23, 2008.

    Posts:

    McCain was shot down, Returned to his Carrier with a badly shot upPlane (no crash) July 1967 on board USS Forrestal CV 59 a Zunirocket misfired hitting the fuel tank of the plane in front, end result134 killed 161 injured 21 aircraft destroyed at a cost of 72 millionand still no plane crash for McCain. A little FYI there are no badCarrier pilots for 2 reasons #1 you kill your self #2 you wash outevery landing is judged, to many problems you are removed fromflight status plus night landings you wash out there could be yourdead. All in all could be the reason the Navy Carrier Pilots are thebest in the world. McCain has a temper, ok by me someone needsto stand up for this Country. In these times could be its better tobe feared than loved

     
  • posted at 1:25 pm on Mon, Jun 23, 2008.

    Posts:

    Joe's headliner-- Will candidates' wives play a role? It's a given, the answer is "yes." From the beginning of time, women have ruled. Either from behind the scene or up-front. Bottom line, women rule.

     
  • posted at 12:40 pm on Mon, Jun 23, 2008.

    Posts:

    Also JD, McCain comes from good stock, willing to give their lives in service to their country. His father and grandfather were both Admirals. If Obama has a prayer in this election, it's that qualifications and experience are highly ignored.

     
  • posted at 12:28 pm on Mon, Jun 23, 2008.

    Posts:

    JD, I too would have preferred Mr. McCain remain with his first wife. But, no telling what kind of baggage he brought home from the POW camps with him. But, McCain has been married to his present wife for around 28 years, so I don't think it should be an issue. I don't think you could call McCain "extremely unlucky" as a pilot either. Anyone who walks away from 5 crashes may be the luckiest person still around. I don't think pilot ability comes up a lot in the Oval Office, and is therefore irrelevant.

     
  • posted at 12:08 pm on Mon, Jun 23, 2008.

    Posts:

    Papercut, I don't think it's *quite* fair to talk about McCain's five crashes. One of them constituted another airplane on his aircraft carrier exploding while he was preparing for takeoff--not exactly his fault.The other ones, though, are an open question. As a pilot McCain was either reckless, incompetent, or extremely unlucky. None of those seem auspicious traits to have in a future president.Cogito, I'd rather McCain had recognized the vow of loyalty inherent to the marriage ceremony and fixed his marriage rather than chasing skirts and running for the divorce courts because the little wifey didn't remain the bombshell she was on the day he married her.

     
  • posted at 10:58 am on Mon, Jun 23, 2008.

    Posts:

    I meant "George". Man, I guess I had too much wine at altitude this weekend! Or maybe OTH is right, and it IS my education!

     
  • posted at 10:54 am on Mon, Jun 23, 2008.

    Posts:

    You're right about that papercut. When it came to piloting a fighter jet, he was no Grorge W. Bush.

     
  • posted at 10:53 am on Mon, Jun 23, 2008.

    Posts:

    As far as I'm concerned, anyone voting for either of these two and keeping a clear conscience is just another sheep in the herd. That's what's wrong with our government and politics today. You vote for McCain or Obama because you're a faithful party sheeple and not intelligent enough to use your own mind and vote for neither. This lesser of two evils is a bunch of garble. No one says you have to mark that box for either of them. Some of you are trying to tell me that you think either one of these major candidates can fix GW's disastrous eight years? Neither will garner my vote and neither party will sway me to vote for them. Why not an old fashioned ballot with several candidates from both parties like the old days?

     
  • posted at 10:43 am on Mon, Jun 23, 2008.

    Posts:

    Gator, did you fail to read the part about his five plane crashes and being on the bottom of the list in flight school. And the worst pilot in his squadron? He quit the air force as soon as his grandfather died, because he didn't have the guts to let him down while he was alive. Like the true neocons Limbaugh and O'reilly you only read the first two sentences and leave the rest out.

     
  • posted at 9:47 am on Mon, Jun 23, 2008.

    Posts:

    OTH, I suspect Mr. McCain simply stood up from his chair and took the weasel to task. I doubt, at his age, he does much physical leaping. There will never be a shortage of those in powerful positions who take advantage of indecent proposals, or even pursue Gary Condit type relationships with the young and willing. Ted says "need a ride home young lady?".

     
  • posted at 9:34 am on Mon, Jun 23, 2008.

    Posts:

    Cogito given your education I will give you the name slip. This time. Smile

     
  • posted at 9:32 am on Mon, Jun 23, 2008.

    Posts:

    As for his first wife as far as I know she remained faithful to him while he was a POW. She was in some type of accident leaving her disfigured. I guess I'm old fashioned, divorce the first one before you start screwing around, ala Newt Gingrinch and truthfully all the others that can't keep their pants zipped I don't care what political party they are.I know it's not done that way now and like I said I guess I'm just old fashioned.

     
  • posted at 9:26 am on Mon, Jun 23, 2008.

    Posts:

    Cogito the incident I heard described he was in talks with a minor foreign diplomat, became angry and jumped out of his chair and began poking the man in the arm telling him he was not there to listen to his crap. The people with him got him back to his chair and another successful diplomatic meeting was concluded.The last half of the last sentence I am being sarcastic but it is rather scary.I agree with you about the despots but in this day and age when every troll in the world has a nuclear arsenal diplomacy, like it or not, has it's place.I doubt seriously there would be any film even if it ever had been captured. Things is Washington have a way of disappearing. Wink wink.

     
  • posted at 7:05 am on Mon, Jun 23, 2008.

    Posts:

    OTH, would you have preferred that McCain remain unhappy in a sham marriage in order to retain a fraudulent public persona, all while continuing to have multiple affairs on the side, ala Bill Clinton?

     
  • posted at 6:58 am on Mon, Jun 23, 2008.

    Posts:

    Correction: Barack Hussein Obama, Freudian slip. My bad.

     
  • posted at 6:53 am on Mon, Jun 23, 2008.

    Posts:

    OTH, do you have any evidence of McCain "jumping up and down in a tantrum"? I seriously doubt it. I, for one, would enjoy seeing McCain taking a foreign leader to task if he, or she, deserved it. I'd like to see him start with that human freakshow Kim Jong-il, then move on to the dwarf from Iran. Pandering to foreign despots is not what I want in a leader. America needs another Truman, not another colossal failure like Carter, which I think Osama Hussein Obama would be.

     
  • posted at 6:00 am on Mon, Jun 23, 2008.

    Posts:

    Cogito I can understand having a spine. However is he going to get spined up in the face of a foreign head of state as he has been known to do with minor diplomats? There's ways of having a spine that don't include jumping up and down in a tantrum.As for his wife Cindy, ask his disfigured ex =wife whom he left after a series of affairs if it is a no brainer.

     
  • posted at 3:12 am on Mon, Jun 23, 2008.

    Posts:

    On may 7th the Navy released McCains records, the Boston Globe is whereI found the article. Note this is just part of the whole storyThe citations refer to his "accurate ordnance delivery" and his "aggressive and skillful airmanship." He earned his Bronze Star the day before he was shot down, for participating in a mission over an airfield in Phuc Yen, 11 miles north of Hanoi.The citation for his Distinguished Flying Cross sums up McCain's misfortune the following day:"Although his aircraft was severely damaged, he continued his bomb delivery pass and released his bombs on the target. When the aircraft would not recover from the dive, Commander McCain was forced to eject over the target. When one relies on scumsites as the Huffington post, Daily KOS and the Democratic underground you canbe sure the information is anything but correct. McCain is not my first choice butwhen I see the alternative it would be a cold day in hell before I ever for a hard core Socialist like Obama. With Obama I can see the USSR. United States Socialist Republic.word count 183

     
  • posted at 1:52 am on Mon, Jun 23, 2008.

    Posts:

    Didn't McCain crash three other planes through his own negligence before he was shot down over 'Nam?I despise Obama, but as someone who vigorously attacked Clinton for his marital infidelity, I don't think I can vote for McCain in good conscience.

     
  • posted at 7:53 pm on Sun, Jun 22, 2008.

    Posts:

    To OTH and everyone else who is concerned about McCains temper. For future reference, that's what a spine looks like. As for Cindy vs. Michelle: Michelle is a leftist Lawyer, and Cindy owns one of the largest, most successful beer distributing companies in the U.S. Can you say "no brainer"?

     
  • posted at 5:09 pm on Sun, Jun 22, 2008.

    Posts:

    As for New Zealand if I was say 30 again I would think nothing of spending5 or 10 years working down there. I gotHooked on Rugby while I was there,It's80 min of the toughest ball I have ever seen.The "All Blacks" are the Nationalworld cup team,world champs 4 out of the last 5 years.River Fishing is fantastic,lots of fish in the 5-10 lb.range as for the people, super niceMaroi are the Natives a very proud people, the men are huge and tough andlove to play Rugby. Think of JR Saou only bigger...

     
  • posted at 4:55 pm on Sun, Jun 22, 2008.

    Posts:

    Here is where it's at OPEC has us by theCajones,I used to think we would never see 2.00 a gallon now I wonder if we will see it in the low 3's.We have the oil to stop gap our problem till we canmake the switch and if we start Drillingwatch the price of oil drop,its calledcompition and the Arabs still want tosell oil to us.As I said before were 35years behind.As for McCain the sound bite was just that, nice edit to saywhat the network wanted.I may not want McCain but he is better than Carter part2,Newt Gingrich with Bobby Jindal for VPwould be my choice.George Soros theDemocratic money man Testified beforethe full Senate that the oil Hedge bubble is going to burst and take lotsof 401-k's and retirement funds with it..The American public needs to wake upand hold the Politico's feet to the fireand fix this mess...

     
  • posted at 11:24 am on Sun, Jun 22, 2008.

    Posts:

    Gator, rereading your blog, I think we are in the same boat... trying to pick the best guy.And serously, how is New Zealand? I hear it is paradise.My sister lives in Oz... that's Australia to regular folks.She calls it Oz but I know she is spelling it Aus.

     
  • posted at 11:22 am on Sun, Jun 22, 2008.

    Posts:

    Both candidates are saying anything and everything to get elected. I thought it funny that everyone jumped on Michelle and not on McCain. Trust me, he is no angel either. I even redid my career years ago so I do NOT even have to get into a car to make a living. Love that internet. I turn my car on only for pleasure.

     
  • posted at 11:21 am on Sun, Jun 22, 2008.

    Posts:

    Gator, did you even look? 1.2 seconds? Hardly.I am a republican looking very closely at both candidates. You want to bury your head, go for it.And FYI I do NOT want to look out my beach house and see an oil rig just because you want to drive an SUV. I drive a hybrid. I believe we are better off getting away from oil. I pay for solar.

     
  • posted at 9:49 am on Sun, Jun 22, 2008.

    Posts:

    Sam,just how credible is a 1.2 second blip,what came before and better yetwhat came after.Factcheck.org and snopes.com are on top of things of this natureif they don't have it more than likelyit's just so much blather.As an independent voter,former Democrat the choice this year really sucks.Obama hasno Energy plan,none McCain has fliped ondrilling,smart move and who he picks for a VP will tell the tale,Bobby Jindalwould be a smart move.We are now inHurricane season and 1 or 2 big ones inthe gulf will push gas to 6.00 a gallonor better and the Man who gets a handleon it will walk into the White House IWas in New Zealand this past year,gaswas 6.50 a gallon.Bacon and eggs for 2with coffee was in the 35 dollor (us)range.If that comes to pass lots of youfolks will be walking to work even if you have job's The New Zealanders aregeting by ok but there are no Suv's,big pickups and the av. size house is 1500-2000 sq ft.As we used to say in the Navy"That Ain't No Bull S***...

     
  • posted at 8:06 am on Sun, Jun 22, 2008.

    Posts:

    Gator, just go to yahoo.com and enter the phrase "mccain never loved his country" and up pops a ton of websites.You can also google the phrase too.Or go to youtube.comIt ain't brain surgery, dude.

     
  • posted at 6:21 am on Sun, Jun 22, 2008.

    Posts:

    Here citizen, listen to it yourself.http://thedailyvoice.com/voice/2008/06/john-mccain-i-really-didnt-lov-000779.php

     
  • posted at 6:02 am on Sun, Jun 22, 2008.

    Posts:

    Yea Gator I agree, it was fairly obvious that Sam was making up that quote about McCain not loving his country. Gotta love those libs.

     
  • posted at 1:47 am on Sun, Jun 22, 2008.

    Posts:

    I'm repeating myself here -- I've said it in other blogs. I'll state AGAIN, this is the most disappointing choice of candidates for me, since I've been of voting age. And that's been some time. I'm so frustrated! What was either party thinking about when they encouraged McCain and Obama to run, and then by electorial votes made them our only choice of the major parties? They are both grossly un-qualified to be president. These are dangerous and violent times; both politically and economically. We NEED a strong and capable leader!

     
  • posted at 3:55 pm on Sat, Jun 21, 2008.

    Posts:

    Every thing you own comes by truck andwe have no energy policy.Most long linetrucks hold 2-400 gallons @ 5.25 per.thats 1050.00 to 2100.00 as one truckersaid if we don't fix it now milk willcost 8.00 a gallon.Since 1973 when the Arabs shut off the oil 7 Administrationshave done nothing,not one damn thing.asfor the Senate and Congress we have justwitnessed the worst in many years...Asfor Obamas plan to tax to fix,well asRon White said "you can't fix stupid"

     
  • posted at 3:34 pm on Sat, Jun 21, 2008.

    Posts:

    Ah yes, McCain. Mr Flip-flopper.

     
  • posted at 2:03 pm on Sat, Jun 21, 2008.

    Posts:

    McCain has a temper thats true but atthe same time he doesn't flip the racecard.The choice we have btween the twois a little scarry, McCain is a flat outRINO and Obama is a pure hardcoreSocialist who is against Nuclear powerand Drilling for oil in our own country.And his plan, tax the oil companys profits,sorry but who does he think will pay the tax,It wont be the oil companies.The Tax they pay now is in the pump price,so you pay now..

     
  • posted at 1:00 pm on Sat, Jun 21, 2008.

    Posts:

    Gator you might want to consider McCains temper tantrums which I understand he has quite a few.

     
  • posted at 12:22 pm on Sat, Jun 21, 2008.

    Posts:

    McCain stated that he never loved this country until he became a POW. It was then that he realized what he was missing. Checked Nexus/Lexus,Fact Check.org and Snopes.com,Came back Nada,ZipZero.As for Obama, we got past Jimmy "C"we will live through his retread.WithObama's thin skin and temper I will layodds he wont make it the full four yearsbefore he has a major melt down and thefolks in the white coats come to see him.Kind of like SNL 24x7x365...

     
  • posted at 6:55 am on Sat, Jun 21, 2008.

    Posts:

    I'm writing in Ron Paul. If the Republicans wanted to win, this is who they should have backed. A lot of people are tired of the Bush/Clinton dynasty and McCain is just Bush lite; so Obama - radical wife and all - has a good chance, providing he does not have Hillary as his VP.Going by the wife, Ron Paul **still** has my vote - he's been married to his wife, Carol, for over 50 years - a lot to be said for stability.

     
  • posted at 5:41 am on Sat, Jun 21, 2008.

    Posts:

    As for whether or not a candidate's spouse should be considered in determining the fitness of her husband to become our next president, precedent was certainly set by Hillary Clinton.Although the first lady is not elected and as far as I know none of them have ever been officially vetted or confirmed by the Senate to be authorized to live in the White House, with the incredible influence wielded by Clinton's wife during his administration, it behooves all of us to take a hard close look at them. Anyone with elevated ambition and access to the president's ear on a continuous basis should be considered a player in any administration from now on.Additionally, I believe that if Obama does not choose Hillary to be his running mate he will have made that decision in large part because of her husband and his (Obamas) wife. It has been made clear that Michelle Obama detests Hillary and there is little doubt that Bill would be content to sit on his hands while so close to the Oval Office where he sat just a few short years ago.

     
  • posted at 4:21 am on Sat, Jun 21, 2008.

    Posts:

    I may be wrong and you shouldn't judge on looks but Cindy McCain looks like the Ice Princess. Or maybe a Stepford Wife.

     
  • posted at 4:03 am on Sat, Jun 21, 2008.

    Posts:

    I saw a clip from FOX news last night. McCain stated that he never loved this country until he became a POW. It was then that he realized what he was missing.I love how people jump on Michelle Obama's comment about it being the first time she is really proud of our country and conveniently forget about McCain's comment.Personally I understand what both were trying to say and agree with their feelings, but ya gotta love one sided politics.

     
  • posted at 2:32 am on Sat, Jun 21, 2008.

    Posts:

    Well I guess an empty vote is better than not voting at all...

     

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